Celtic linked with Thierry Ambrose amid interest from Nice

Celtic are reportedly interested in Manchester City's Thierry Ambrose, but the youngster is understood to be a target for OGC Nice, according to reports in France.

The 21-year-old spent the 2017/18 season on loan at NAC Breda in the Netherlands, where he scored ten goals and contributed five assists in 32 matches, and his exploits have caught the eye of former City midfielder Patrick Vieira.

The former France international took charge at Nice last week, and knows Ambrose well from his time as a coach with City’s youth teams.

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According to L’Equipe, Ambrose has been scouted by Anderlecht, Bordeaux and Celtic but Onze Mondial reports that Nice’s interest is at an advanced stage.

Thierry Ambrose challenges Ben Sheaf during a Premier League 2 match in March 2017. Picture: Getty Images

One reason Vieira is keen on a reunion with Ambrose is the likely departure of Alassane Plea.

The 25-year-old forward is expected to leave the Allianz Riviera this summer but Ambrose could be brought in as a replacement for the former Lyon youngster.

Ambrose was attached to AJ Auxerre as a child, joining City at the age of just 16.

In his first season with City’s Academy he finished top scorer and his performances prompted an invitation from then boss Manuel Pellegrini to train with the first team.

Patrick Vieira is keen on bringing Ambrose to Nice. Picture: Getty Images

He has been capped by France at Under-16, Under-17, Under-18 and Under-19 level and despite a serious knee injury, caught the eye of Pep Guardiola on his return to action.

During his season in the Dutch Eredivisie, Ambrose was the only player in the division to score against the “big three” of Ajax, PSV Eindhoven and Feyenoord.

Last season, Celtic signed Olivier Ntcham from Manchester City, while Patrick Roberts, Jason Denayer and John Guidetti have all enjoyed loan spells at Parkhead while on City’s books in recent seasons.

Belgian international Dedryck Boyata joined on a permanent deal in 2015.