Rodgers could land lethal Kuhn partner in Celtic swoop for £3m marksman

Celtic did not enjoy a perfect first half of the season under Brendan Rodgers, who replaced Ange Postecoglou last summer, as they struggled in Europe and stuttered domestically.

The Scottish giants were knocked out of the League Cup by Kilmarnock in August and that put to an end any hope of replicating the domestic treble they achieved last term.

Rodgers currently has the side sitting top of the Scottish Premiership table with 17 wins from 22 matches and they are eight points clear of second place.

Current Premiership top six (via Sofascore)



Matches played


















St Mirren








However, as you can see in the table above, their closest rivals have the opportunity to cut the gap to just two points if they win their games in hand.

The Hoops, who were knocked out of Europe as they finished bottom of their Champions League group, have decided that they needed to bolster their squad this month.

Celtic’s attempts to improve the team in January

Rodgers has already made his first signing of the window with the addition of German winger Nicolas Kuhn from Rapid Wien on a permanent deal.

The former Ajax and Bayern Munich starlet arrived earlier this month for a reported fee of £3m to bolster the head coach’s options on the flanks.

However, that does not look likely to be the end of the club’s business this month as the Hoops boss is reportedly keen on up to three more signings.

Football Insider recently reported that the Northern Irish tactician has his eyes on a left-back, a goalkeeper, and a centre-forward to improve his playing squad.


One striker who has been linked with a move to Parkhead in January is Hearts marksman Lawrence Shankland as journalist Graeme Bailey claimed that the club are considering a swoop for him.

However, the accompanying report from HITC claimed that the Scottish giants may face Premier League competition for his signature as the likes of Burnley, Sheffield United, Everton, and Crystal Palace are also keeping tabs on the impressive finisher.

Football Insider claimed that fellow Premiership side Rangers are also interested in a deal for the attacker but are likely to be priced out of a move for him until the end of the season.

Their report stated that the Jam Tarts are set to demand a fee of at least £3m for the attacker, which has taken the Light Blues out of the race for now.

It, however, remains to be seen whether or not Celtic are prepared to splash out £3m on the Scotland international before the end of the current window.

If Rodgers does win the race for his signature ahead of the second half of the 2023/24 campaign then he could land a lethal partner for Kuhn in the final third.

Nicolas Kuhn’s creative brilliance

The Hoops snapped up the impressive forward off the back of an excellent first half of the season with Rapid Wien in the Austrian Bundesliga.

Kuhn is finally starting to showcase his quality at first-team level this term after he initially struggled to translate his superb academy form over to senior football.

Form at academy level (via Transfermarkt)

Nicolas Kuhn


RB Leipzig

Bayern Munich

















As you can see in the table above, the left-footed whiz excelled at various top clubs but did not make the breakthrough in the first-team for any of them.

He then ended up at Rapid Wien in Austria and displayed his creative brilliance in the Bundesliga during the first half of this season, which led to a move to Parkhead.

Kuhn started 16 matches in the Austrian top-flight and contributed with five assists, 11 ‘big chances’ created, and 1.8 key passes per game for his side.

The 24-year-old ace, who also scored two goals, averaged one ‘big chance’ created every 1.45 matches for Wien. Meanwhile, Luis Palma (11 in 17) has created one every 1.55 outings and Matt O’Riley (six in 21) has produced one every 3.5 games in the Premiership.

This suggests that Kuhn could be an outstanding creator during the second half of the season for Celtic if he can translate his performances over to the Scottish top-flight.

The stats that show why Shankland could thrive alongside Kuhn

Rodgers could provide the German wizard with a prolific centre-forward who has the quality to make the most of the big chances he can create by snapping up Shankland from Hearts for £3m.

He is currently the top scorer in the Scottish Premiership with 13 strikes to his name for the Jam Tarts – three more than O’Riley in second place.


The Scotland international has racked up 13 goals in 21 league outings for his club, and seven of those goals have come in his last six outings.

Shankland’s finishing has been particularly impressive as the 28-year-old forward has only missed five ‘big chances’ and scored 13 goals from an Expected Goals of just 9.05.

His outstanding efficiency in front of goal is not a flash in the pan, either, as the Scottish marksman also scored 24 goals from an xG of 15.93 in the division during the 2022/23 campaign.

This means that the impressive Celtic target, whose finishing was described as “unbelievable” by pundit Kris Boyd, has plundered 37 goals from an xG of 24.98 for Hearts in the Premiership since the start of last season.

Therefore, Shankland is a phenomenal finisher who does not waste many opportunities to find the back of the net, which is illustrated by his outstanding record in front of goal over the last 18 months.

Now, imagine how many goals the £3m-rated whiz would score with the likes of Kuhn, Palma, and O’Riley creating ‘big chances’ on a regular basis for the prolific striker.

He could thrive at Parkhead with the service that the club’s creative wizards can provide, which is why the Hearts captain could be a lethal partner for Kuhn in the final third.

Rodgers could create a new dynamic duo at the top end of the pitch by bringing Shankland in as his second signing after the German forward.

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