Sheffield United: Celtic 'ready to meet' Middlesbrough's £5m valuation for rumoured Blades target
Scottish Premiership champions Celtic are believed to be willing to stump up the £5 million required to land Middlesbrough defender Paddy McNair, amid reported interest from Sheffield United.
The former Manchester United starlet is set to be moved on by Middlesbrough this summer, as new manager Jonathan Woodgate looks to accumulate funds to launch his own spending spree.
According to the Northern Echo, Boro are only looking to recoup the £5m they spent on the player last summer, that saw him move from Sunderland following their unexpected plummet into League One.
The report suggests that Celtic are more than willing to pay the asking price, but also claims that Sheffield United are more likely to meet the player's unspecified wage demands.
Given their new Premier League status, the Blades has been linked with a host of new signings already this summer. However, the club are understood to have an interest in McNair, as their manager Chris Wilder looks to strengthen his defence.
United are likely to stick with a formation using three central defenders next season, and the Northern Ireland international would certainly provide competition for a starting spot in the back-line.
It remains unclear whether the 24-year-old would favour a move to Celtic Park or Bramall Lane – the former offering the allure of Champions League football, but the latter allowing a return to the Premier League.