Mowbray has been linked with a loan move for Jeffren Suarez, a 21-year-old winger currently playing for the Barcelona B squad. Jeffren, as he is known, has struggled for game-time this season in a Messi, Henry and Ibrahimovic dominated forward line and, according to Gerry Armstrong, Sky Sports’ Spanish football pundit, the Celtic manager faces an uphill battle to entice Jeffren to swop the Camp Nou for Parkhead.

Barcelona are defending an unprecedented treble and, with the games coming thick and fast for the La Liga leaders, coach Pep Guardiola may want to retain the majority of his playing staff.

“I think Guardiola would be very reluctant to let any of his squad go in case they get a lot of injuries,” Armstrong said. “They have the Club World Championships coming up, they have got the Copa Del Rey, as well as La Liga. The Copa Del Rey starts in January and they will have midweek games throughout that month and into February before the Champions League restarts.

“They are playing two games a week and I would be very surprised if Guardiola let anyone go. If there is an injury or two, suddenly Jeffren will be in the frame.”

The proposed arrival of Jeffren, a Under-19 European Championship winner with Spain, will certainly brighten the mood of a Celtic faithful who have decidedly mixed views about the opening months of the Mowbray era.

Armstrong opted to leave Tottenham Hotspur for Watford in 1980 in search of first-team football and while he acknowledges the benefits of a short-term deal, he is undecided if it would benefit both parties.

“Youngsters need experience, but it depends what level they are going to, what league they are going to,” Armstrong insisted. “If it suits Guardiola to let them go, there is a lot of criteria that have to be fulfilled.

“I don’t know if a loan to Celtic would be good or not. Certainly, playing first-team football would be important, but I don’t know if he would be suited to the Scottish league. La Liga is very technical is terms of skill and technique and pace. There is a physical side to the Scottish league and I am not sure if that would suit him.

“As well as that, Celtic already have a lot of wide players. I don’t know if there would be any point in taking Jeffren when they have already got Niall McGinn.”

The progression of youth players through the La Masia training facility has been the Catalonian club’s forte in recent years. Guardiola, Carles Puyol, Xavi, Andres Iniesta and Lionel Messi are just some of the players that have made the transition to the first team.

Pedro, a striker, is 
regarded as the next one to watch, but if Celtic can attract Jeffren to Glasgow, Armstrong believes they will have acquired a real talent.

“Jeffren is very similar to Pedro,” said the Northern Irishman. “He is very skilful and technical. He can play in the wide areas or he can play in the hole as well. He is more of a creative player, so he won’t be scoring lots of goals, but he will create chances for others.”