Oliver Burke has indicated he would be willing to remain at Celtic beyond the terms of his six-month loan deal if he can build on the promising start he has made with the Scottish champions.
The 21-year-old West Bromwich Albion attacker scored twice in Wednesday’s 4-0 win over St Mirren, doubling his senior goals tally for the past 18 months.
Burke has begun both games for Brendan Rodgers’ side at centre-forward following the resumption of action after the winter shutdown. They were his first back-to-back starts in senior football since he was with Nottingham Forest.
Such a feat subsequently eluded him following two huge moves. He joined RB Leipzig from Forest for £13 million in summer 2016 and then moved to West Brom in August 2017 for a fee that was reported at the time as £15m, making him the most expensive Scottish player of all time.
Burke struggled at the Hawthorns but gives credit to Rodgers for revitalising his career north of the border. It isn’t something that the player will give up lightly, even though there is no buy-out clause in the deal Celtic struck with West Brom.
Asked if he could stay at Celtic beyond the summer, the player said: “It’s not really anything that’s been spoken about yet but I’m sure if I continue to keep doing well and stuff I’ll want to stay here as a player.
“Knowing that I’m going to play football, I think that’s the main thing for me now especially at a young age. I’ve been sort of starved of football for the past couple of years now so that’s all I want to do. I just want to be out there enjoying myself on nights like Wednesday. It was a massive relief for me to score and an amazing feeling. I feel really happy.”
Burke’s contentment owes everything to the fact that Rodgers appears to be on a personal crusade to coach him in manner that maximises the player’s “phenomenal” pace and power.
“That’s a massive factor for me [in coming to Celtic],” said the forward. “Everybody knows what he has done as a manager. He’s amazing, he develops some outstanding talents.
“And the talents that have come through here at Celtic have pushed on and gone on to great things. So I know that he is the right man and that I can develop under him. It’s a great thing for me. My team-mates are also a massive help. I feel at home already.”