John Kennedy, Celtic’s assistant manager, has told Patrick Roberts that the Parkhead side offer the greatest scope for career development and progress.

News is expected to be confirmed about Roberts’ immediate future with Celtic and Southampton both keen on the England under-20 internationalist. The player has intimated that he would like to return to Celtic, where he enjoyed a productive 18-month loan spell that culminated with last season’s Treble winning campaign, but the final destination is expected to be call by City who would prefer the player to go back out on loan.

Certainly, though, Kennedy believes that the tutelage of Brendan Rodgers and the possibility of playing Champions League football can provide an allure for both Roberts and Manchester City.

Loading article content

Read more: Adam Barton: Celtic playing in Scotland is like Chelsea playing in Championship

“I think you just need to look at how much he has improved in the last 18 months,” said Kennedy. “We’re going to be in Europe this season again.

“I think when we sent him back they will have seen he was a much-improved player. Hopefully they will look at it from that perspective, but it’s their call. Patrick could maybe influence that and they could have a chat about it but we have to take a back seat and be patient.”

A decision is expected to be made imminently and while Celtic have the capabilities to finance the deal, it is City who will have the definitive say on where Roberts will be playing his football.

“They’ve got him under contract and will be a big influence in what his next step is,” said Kennedy. “If the opportunity came to take him we’d be delighted to do so. But it’s not up to us. We’ve stated from day one we’d welcome him back but it will be up to man City and Patrick. At the moment nothing is moving.

“We don’t really know. We’re aware that Man City may be looking to put him out on loan again. They are aware of the opportunity came we’d be happy to take him but man City might have other options they are pursuing. We just need to be patient. On the last day of the window if he became available we’d be happy to take him.”

Read more: Adam Barton: Celtic playing in Scotland is like Chelsea playing in Championship

Should the pursuit of Roberts fail to come to fruition, Celtic could return to the transfer market before the closure of the window at the end of this month but there will be no rush to panic buy.

“We’re in a position where if we’re going to add we probably only need one more player,” explained Kennedy.

“If Patrick became available, great. If not there are other options but it needs to be right. We won’t just bring a player in for the sake of it. If it’s not quite right for us we will probably just go with what we have got.

“If someone becomes available that we know or highly regard we would obviously try to do something

“The squad at the moment is very strong. We are in a good place and we’re very confident going into next week so we’ll see what happens.”

Listen to the Herald Sport podcast: We discuss Kieran Tierney's Celtic future, Rangers battering Dunfermline and ponder a Motherwell cup victory.

Download this episode (right click and save) or alternatively listen on Podbean or iTunes.