Celtic could miss out on Japanese star as left-back target left out amidst speculation

Celtic will face very stiff competition if they are to land Japanese international Ko Itakura.

The Scottish champions have been linked with the 25-year-old who is contract to Manchester City. However, it is reported Borussia Monchengladbach are the team in pole position to sign the player.

Itakura, who can play as a centre-back or at the base of the midfield, impressed on loan in Germany last season. He started 30 of 34 games for Schalke 04 as the German giants won promotion to the top-flight.

His performances have attracted interest from the Bundesliga, as well as from Celtic and Premier League new boys Bournemouth


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Manchester City bought the player from Kawasaki Frontale in his homeland in 2019 but has yet to feature for the English side. Itakura has had two loan spells with Groningen in the Eredivisie before his move to Schalke who would like to retain his services.

Monchengladbach, according to Sky Sports, have made the first serious move for the player who has played seven of Japan’s last eight internationals.

Meanwhile, Celtic have been linked with a move for Argentine left-back Alexandro Bernabéi.

According to reports in the player's homeland, a bid has already been rejected by Lanus for the 21-year-old who has appeared for the Argentina Under-23 side.


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Ko Itakura is in demand after his loan spell with Schalke 04. (Photo by Kenta Harada/Getty Images)

Speculation that a move could be in the offing has increased with the Bernabei left out of the squad for the club’s Argentine Primera Division clash with Atletico Tucuman on Wednesday evening.

Bernabéi has made more than 80 appearances for the Granate.

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