With the transfer deadline less than a fortnight away, there still looks to be some unfinished business in Glasgow.
Celtic ‘s swift exile of Covid-19 bad boy Boli Bolingoli plus the summer departure of Jonny Hayes has left Greg Taylor as the only first-team left-back.
Even if Taylor was putting in blistering performances every week, a back-up would still be required. That some fans are still unconvinced if he’s the right man for the position going forward underlines the need for cover.
Meanwhile at Rangers, the missing piece of the jigsaw appears to be in midfield.
A stale performance at Hibs on Sunday in the absence of Joe Aribo and Ryan Jack exacerbated that need but time is running out to secure the dynamic, box-to-box type that Steven Gerrard publicly covets.
Loan signings have not been as prevalent across the two clubs as they can be. Rangers have not signed any players on a temporary basis this summer.
Neil Lennon has brought back Moi Elyounoussi for a another year along with the loan signing of Shane Duffy – although Parkhead chiefs already appear keen to turn that contract permanent.
With clubs in England emerging from the Covid-19 crisis and upping their spending to regular levels, there could be some interesting opportunities for the Premiership pair in their problem positions if they’re keen to give the young loan market a chance.
Here are the five young stars of tomorrow who can help Celtic and Rangers today – and another not quite up-and-coming but could improve the team.
Celtic – Brandon Williams (Manchester United)
Let’s start with a bit of a wildcard.
Yes, rising left-back Williams has already got plenty of game time at Old Trafford under his belt. And yes, Red Devils boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is a clear fan of him.
But he looks to be relegated to third-choice in the coming days if recent transfer rumours are to be believed.
United are keen on Porto’s Alex Telles with a move expected to be completed by the end of this week.
If he arrives, it’s likely Williams will have to battle full England international Luke Shaw just for a place on the bench.
For a fledgling 20-year-old who has just experienced the rush of first-team football, that isn’t going to fly.
Celtic and European football could be marketed as an ideal spot for Williams to continue his development and return to Manchester with a high chance of winners medals and extensive first-team action.
Celtic – Ryan Sessegnon (Tottenham Hotspur)
Similar to Williams’ situation at United is former Fulham man Sessegnon.
Ben Davies and now Sergio Reguilon will be ahead of him in the North London pecking order after the Real Madrid man sealed his move at the weekend.
Even returning loan man Gareth Bale can fill in at left-back so it’s time for Jose Mourinho to find a temporary destination for Sessegnon.
Football.london ‘s Spurs correspondent Alasdair Gold agrees and he understands that the club are actively looking to send him out to gain experience ahead of the October 5 deadline.
Still only 20, there is plenty of room to develop and Sessegnon’s performances at Fulham should be enough reason to interest Lennon after being linked last month.
Celtic – Joel Lopez (Arsenal)
On to a lesser-known name now. Spanish left-back Joel Lopez is steadily rising through the academy ranks at Arsenal.
At just 18, it might be slightly early for Lopez to gain first-team experience but he’s highly regarded at the Emirates Stadium – including being earmarked as Kieran Tierney’s eventual understudy in the position.
Formerly of Barcelona’s La Masia, Lopez swapped Los Cules for London Colney in March 2018.
He was named in Arsenal’s Europa League squad by former manager Unai Emery last season.
Rangers – Jamie Shackleton (Leeds United)
Shackleton has featured in the Lilywhites’ most recent two seasons in the Championship under Marcelo Bielsa.
But after promotion, the Argentine manager is keen for new blood in the midfield, and Shackleton will definitely struggle for game time.
New England international Kalvin Phillips, veteran playmaker Pablo Hernandez and Poland’s Mateusz Klich have all been preferred in the opening two games of the Premier League.
Reports have also linked Leeds to new signings in the engine room such as Udinese’s Rodrigo De Paul, among others.
Standing at just 5 foot 5, 20-year-old midfielder Shackleton belies his small stature with a relentless pressing game learned under Bielsa.
Rangers could provide a great platform for the youngster and after securing his Elland Road future with a contract until 2024, the diminutive playmaker can kick on with a year-long spell.
Rangers – Curtis Jones (Liverpool)
The Gerrard Liverpool connection remains intact. Rangers have loaned players from the Reds in his first two seasons – why not dip back into the market for another of Jurgen Klopp’s young guns?
Admittedly, Jones has been much more involved around the first team than the likes of Sheyi Ojo, Ryan Kent or Ovie Ejaria were.
But with the arrival of Thiago Alcantara at Anfield and seemingly no exit yet for Gini Wijnaldum, he’ll be hard pressed to make the bench most weeks.
Diogo Jota’s £45million arrival also begs the question if Klopp will reshuffle his favoured three-midfielder formation and change to a 4-2-3-1.
To put it mildly, Jones will struggle to break into the team this season, even if he is a very bright fringe talent. A season at Rangers would greatly help his development while a first-team path is cleared for him in the meantime.
Rangers – Daniel Johnson (Preston North End)
He isn’t in the Premier League and the 27-year-old isn’t a rising star but we can’t not include the man most likely to head to Ibrox to fill their midfield need.
With 12 goals and eight assists last season he can clearly contribute on the attacking end of the pitch.
Some fans have commented that the midfield has been a little laboured at times and too keen to play the sideways or backwards pass.
Johnson could provide a fresh injection of attacking impetus to prevent any stagnation as the Ibrox side desperately look
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