Premier League • England

‘Outstanding’ Liverpool star tipped for surprise exit that’s beginning to look inevitable

Marcelo Pitaluga, Joe Gomez, Diogo Jota, Virgil van Dijk and Caoimhin Kelleher

Celtic and Brendan Rodgers have been tipped to complete a Liverpool raid for an “outstanding” star whose Anfield exit could be just a matter of time.

One player heavily linked with leaving Liverpool during the recent summer window was goalkeeper Caomihin Kelleher.

The Ireland international, 24, serves as deputy to Alisson Becker, though many believe he’s at a level that deserves far more regular playing time.

But with arguably the world’s best goalkeeper in situ at Anfield, Kelleher’s chances of becoming No 1 on Merseyside are slim to none.

As such, Kelleher was linked with various Premier League sides over the summer including Brentford, Brighton and Tottenham.

A move did not materialise amid Jurgen Klopp insisting it’d take an “extraordinary offer” before Liverpool cash in. However, that did not stop Scottish champions Celtic from attempting to secure a late-window coup.

Brendan Rodgers’ side are hunting a long-term successor to 36-year-old Joe Hart who has seen mistakes creep into his game. What’s more, Hart’s limitations with the ball at feet appear to make him a poor fit for Rodgers’ style.

The Scottish Sun revealed Kelleher is Rodgers’ No 1 target between the sticks moving forwards. Transfer insider Dean Jones confirmed contact regarding the move was made prior to the deadline passing 11 days ago.

Now, speaking to Football Insider, former Scotland international Alan Hutton tipped Celtic to be the ones to finally prise Kelleher out of Liverpool.

Hutton labelled Kelleher “outstanding” based on the limited appearances he’s been afforded at Anfield thus far. Given Alisson’s presence, Kelleher has generally been restricted to cup outings where he has thrived – especially in penalty shootouts.

Kelleher an “excellent recruit” for Celtic – Hutton

“Every time I have seen Kelleher play he has been outstanding,” said Hutton.

“It has got to a stage where he must be desperate to play regular football. Would he be a good fit for Celtic? Of course he would but I think it [the criticism] has been a little bit harsh on Joe Hart.

“I know he has made a few mistakes and is not the best when it comes to playing the ball with his feet but I think he has done well at Celtic.

“I think all the criticism that has been aimed at him is a little bit harsh but I understand if Brendan Rodgers wants to play a particular way and is looking elsewhere. I get that and I think Kelleher would be an excellent recruit for the squad.”

Kelleher is under contract at Liverpool until the summer of 2026. As such, the Reds are under no pressure to sell, though if the player wishes to become a regular starter, it seems clear he must leave Anfield.

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