A winning window?


We have watched Celtic through many transfer windows but I don’t think we have ever hit as many targets before – both in terms of who we brought in and who we moved out.

It is still early in the season but Kyogo Furuhashi (26) looks every inch a superstar in hoops.  Two years ago we pondered who was better, Edouard or Dembele, without reaching a clear conclusion.  Today, Kyogo would be first pick from the three of them.  It has been 17 years since we have seen a striker with such promise – so no pressure, Kyogo.

The first assumption is that Georgios Gialouakis (26) will have to wait on Kyogo being rested to make his mark.  With a long season ahead, who knows?  Georgios offers an aerial target that we have missed for many years, there could be occasions when he is preferred, or when both are used.

I hear great things about Josip Juranovic (26) from Zbyszek.  He was a stand out for Legia last season and no one there is happy he has left.  He gets forward, has an end product and can defend.  The defence is already vastly more stable than it was last season, the addition of Jura should help.

Carl Starfelt (26) is frustratingly difficult to assess.  He is good on the ball, fast, and reads the game well enough to cover for teammates.  Then there are the mistakes that cost goals.  At the same stage of Christopher Jullien’s Celtic career, the French defender was sitting on the bench, unable to win a place in the team that exited the Champions League.  Christopher soon settled, Carl must do the same.

That’s four 26-year-olds added at their athletic peak.  Not often we do that.

Paying £3.6m for a 19-year-old from Israeli football is at the higher end of what Maccabi Petah Tikva could have hoped for.  Liel Abada’s instant return in goals and assists indicates why they got that figure.  He is the youngest of the 12 signings this window and will continue to develop for years.

Joe Hart (34) is by some margin better than any of the three keepers who shuffled through the starting line-up last season.  He has already brought authority – as well as saves (!) – to the team.

Five years ago, James McCarthy (30) was miles out of our reach.  The subsequent seasons have not been kind, as the player’s appearance stats were subverted by various injuries.  30 minutes into his Celtic career, he again missed out through injury.  James has controlled games in the EPL.  If we get him fit, he will play in our most important games.  Let’s hope.

Filipe Jota (22) has skill and incredible pace.  Last season he was on loan at Real Valladolid, who finished 19th in La Liga and were relegated.  There is a rule of thumb I used whenever Patrick Roberts moves.  Patrick is a slight and skilful player, similar to Jota, but since leaving Celtic, Patrick has mostly played for teams at the bottom end of the table, where robust defending is required, often at the cost of creative players.  The slight, pacey and skilful players should ply their trade with clubs operating at the top end of the table.

There is development work ahead for Jota but he starts from a respectable high.

Cameron Carter-Vickers’ (23) signing was not quite as late as John Guidetti (another story) but he slipped through the window with minutes to spare.  My big worry about central defence is that I don’t expect Christopher Jullien to contribute much before Christmas (he is a slow starter to the season), leaving us short of cover for the Europa League.

Jota and Cameron both have the incentive of a permanent deal with Celtic to play for.  This worked well for Odsonne, let’s hope for the same.

Liam Scales (23) is the same age as Cameron and will hope to force his way into either central defence or left back.  £500k is decent money to pay for a League of Ireland player, his addition should ensure we do not force Nir Bitton back into the middle of the back line again.

Liam Shaw (20) and Osaze Urhoghide (20) are unlikely to see much game time this season.

Do you want to know how important it is that we sold Odsonne Edouard and (to a lesser extent) Ryan Christie?  Wait and see what happens across the city, where a team who publicly made it known they needed to sell players were unable to do so.

You either manage your assets or you fail to manage your assets and they expire looking more like liabilities.  Under different circumstances, Odsonne, Ryan and Kristoffer Ajer would have been sold a year ago, but the decision was made to retain them for the 10-in-a-row season.  I know, you all said “Sell them!” at the time………

None of them attracted clubs of the calibre that Kieran and Moussa did.  That we got north of £30m for them from EPL bottom dwellers is above my expectations.  There are deductions for sell-on clauses, of course, but this money, in addition to the revenue from Jeremie Frimpong (minus sell-on) and Patryk Klimala will have a huge impact on Scottish football in the years ahead.

Leigh Griffiths moved on, thank goodness.  Boli Bolingoli and Vasilis Barkas did not, both will wither on the vine.

So, are we going to win the league?  I’m feeling good about it.

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  1. Paul67,



    I’m happy enough about the transfer window – its a heck of a turnaround of players so Patience is required.



    If we have a few others like Adam gonnae break through we are in fine enough fettle as I thought he was quality over in Holland especially given the pressure. Josip will be a Star at Celtic.



    Dinnae agree that Carl has plenty pace but he is improving well after a very difficult start. I’d be looking to get mair pace in the defence in January.



    Being picky I’d have liked another backup keeper as our backups at the moment urnae reliable IMO.

  2. EKBHOY on 1ST SEPTEMBER 2021 3:15 PM



    Perhaps the greatest indictment of the state of Scottish football is that their squad, which was so ‘fit4purpose’ here last season, was made up of players unwanted in leagues where decent, modern football is allowed to exist.



    HH jg

  3. lets all do the huddle on

    we have been saying for years there may be trouble ahead for them



    in which time they have stopped us getting the 10, we havent beaten them in 7 or 8 games and they just beat us in the first head to head of the season



    at what point should it stop mattering to us that there may be trouble ahead



    we should have had a good enough team to beat them on the park in recent times instead of relying on some possible troubles for them

  4. OptaCeltic








    Since summer of 2018, Celtic have received £104m in player transfer fees and have spent £63.5m on player transfers fees

  5. I think Barkas could be a very good goalkeeper if the defence could prevent the opposition shooting balls at his goal.




  6. The Blogger Formerly Known As GM on

    How are they going to check 60k vaccine passports of folk entering Celtic Park?



    It will be a total shit-show with queues down London Road.

  7. TICTASTIC on 1ST SEPTEMBER 2021 3:23 PM


    It’s like a broken record in here…





    “People” who just won’t give up….





    They try to drag this blog down…





    Why don’t we just move on…







    Because having failed to win the ten, and having lost the first Old Firm Game. and sitting 6th in the league having lost half the games played so far, and with a CL place available for winning the league Celtic have emerged from the transfer window with more money in the bank than before, having sold the most talented footballer in the league.





    Couldn’t agree more with all the points you make, some of which was implied in my post “ages ago”.



    Our spending of £40m over two seasons is the equivalent of five times our maximum TV money for two seasons (2x£4m) and probably 35%+ of our total Covid restricted operational revenue (2x £55m) for the same period – we just couldn’t do it without selling players.



    Look at teams in the lower echelons of the EPL, e.g. Burnley, Brighton, Brentford, Crystal Palace, Norwich & Watford – all will get c£100m no matter where they finish in the league. None of them are spending five-times their TV money, i.e. £500m on transfers. They can of course snap up our players for £13m/£15m – maybe we should be grateful, as it allows us to replace them with a few @ £3m/£4.5m who fit within our wage structure.



    Some do fantasise that Celtic is awash with money and stashing it for underhand purposes – reading this year’s annual statement will be educational & instructional to all.

  9. I just read that celtic had a settled team last year and added 20 million of talent before losing the league. What a strange statement. The Celtic team was full of infighting with a host of players pushing for an exit and a manager who called them out in the media adding fuel to the already flaming fire.



    Last season the recruitment looked scattergun i.e. signing what we thought were good players rather than identifying the correct type of players for the team’s style of play. Turns out there was no plan or structure.



    Most of the players we have signed this summer are very much of a similar type and fit with Ange’ style of play.



    Gk – Hart – experienced


    Cb – CCV – pacey, strong


    Cb – Starfelt – pacey


    Cb/Lb – Scales – pacey, workhorse


    Cb/rb – URHOGHIDE – pacey, workhorse


    Rb – JURANOVIC – pacey, workhorse


    Cm – McCarthy- expereinced, workhorse


    Cm – shaw – pacey, workhorse


    Fw – FURUHASHI – pacey, direct, workhorse


    Fw – Georgios Giakoumakis, powerful, workhorse


    L/Rw – JOTA – pacey, skillful, direct


    R/Lw – Abada – pacey, skillful, direct



    This does not mean the players will all succeed but if the players fit the system then the chances of success are greater. I would still like more powerful runners in the middle of the pitch and would reassess leftback position too. Perhaps Ange will have a few players in mind for january.



    Hopefully Ange is able to now focus on 1st team training, games and sorting the backroom out I.e. sport science, coaches etc. Its easy to forget just how early we are into this plan.




  10. Since when has a club been determined by its TV deal.


    That level of analysis is just a one club golfer bumping his gums.



    We are much more than our TV deal.


    If others cannot do it then we need to grow our audience.


    Playing good football on the park is the way to do it.



    AP will help us grow our audience.


    KF will help us grow our audience.


    LS will help us grow our audience.


    CCV will help us grow our audience.

  11. Greetings Timlord



    Apologies for my lack of communications these past several plasmaball traverses. Sadly hunverse forces managed to damage my machine during the Great Battle of Postecoglou Hill in 2581 and sent me spiraling into the void of hyperspace for several centuries.



    In better news though, I finally managed to discharge the emergency singularity airbags within my machine, resulting in an unplanned entry of the 2043 sector, where some very helpful quantum mechanics from Qwik Fix managed to repair the chronology protection conjecture filters with some quantum foam.



    As you will not be aware, until now, I decided to pay a visit to New Paradise while waiting for my machines repairs and was stunned to witness the colossal stained glass facade of New Paradise. A remarkable installation portraying Timverse greats throughout the timeline until 2043. Breathless in my astonishment of forehead, I could only mutter, Now that’s a Window!



    In even better news though, you will be glad to learn, on my return to the Battle of Postecoglou Hill and with a fully repaired machine, I discharged my Reality Box weapon on the hunverse hordes, who were, as you will not be aware, left void of memory stumbling around looking for their history.



    In sadder news though, I hope you have been harvesting plenty of potatoes as those quantum mechanics at Qwik Fix charge a cyber arm & leg for repairs.




    To infinity & backwards!

  12. Vaccine Passports will be required for Celtic Park:






    I am recovering from COVID which can be traced back to the date of the St Mirren game. Severe cough on the Wednesday, 5 days later( (Saturday is counted in the days) . Lateral Flow test on the Thursday was negative but I went for the PCR and got the notification 24 hours later on the Friday. I did another LF test which came up as positive on the Saturday to see if it worked . A doctor explained that LF is not as able to pick up small doses of the disease but by Saturday the levels had increased and it did.



    I took a side extension in the house with office room, tv room and shower room and I can get out to the garden so it has not been a major imposition for me to isolate. We are so lucky. I get out on Saturday so I will clean my area and shower etc. before I go back into the living room/kitchen etc.



    This is not by any means trivial. Symptoms have been (just) in the sever cold range plus total loss of smell/ distorted taste and regular fatigue partly caused by nights of disturbed sleep.



    Flowers that I ordered have just arrived for my wife addressed to her full title of “Miss World 1979 to date” to thank her for all the extra care she has had to do for me and the dog.



    I am double jagged but took part in a Biobank study after the first jag and no antibodies were found. Yesterday i sent away a kit to by tested for antibodies as soon as possible after infection and will do that again in 3 weeks to see how the antibodies have increased due to this episode.



    Look after yourselves.

  13. ERNIE LYNCH on 1ST SEPTEMBER 2021 1:41 PM




    Good question – can I re-phrase it to read “Is c£20m+ spend whilst losing three of your best/established players, Ajer, Edouard & Christie, sufficient to close a twenty-five point gap?”.



    My short answer would be no, it will take a couple of seasons.



    When will Ange know his best core eleven?



    How much will injury affect what is an new & inexperienced squad.



    How many of the 12/13 newbies will actually ‘click’? History says less than 30% – Brendan had five successes out of sixteen. Fortunately he had/inherited a settled core.



    Maybe Ange will astound us all – no one happier than I if he does.

  14. A few yrs ago Swansea paid out big money for Holland’s top scorer as did Spurs more recently. Neither player could be considered a success. Mibbe don’t build your hopes up about big Giorgeous. At least we’ve got him on the cheap.

  15. Blogger GM



    What is the end game here ?



    This ludicrous imposition on the club and in the supporters will have zero impact as the 59,000 or so who attend could easily transmit this bug to each other anyway.



    Maybe some kind of pre checking of lateral flow tests could work to minimise spread and ensure folk felt safe but even then the admin burden for that would be massive.



    Sadly this seems to be more politically motivated than actually being done for the general good.



    By the time it were introduced most young folk ( jabbed or not ) will have had the bug and the other older folk will mostly be jabbed anyway.



    Crazy over the top ‘control’.

  16. Call_of_Juarez



    To be fair to Wilfried Bony he scored 25 Premier League goals in 54 matches for Swansea before they sold him to Man City for double what the paid for him.



    That’s not a comment on whether Giakoumakis will be a success or not.

  17. MADMITCH on 1ST SEPTEMBER 2021 3:44 PM




    Genuine question.



    Audience? I am intrigued – what audience and how will it add to our income?



    Champions League participation will add significantly to our income and Europa League does marginally the same. We are tied to the SFA/SPFL TV contract – where is there a bigger audience?

  18. Hrvstski Jim



    Sorry to hear of your challenges.



    Astonishing inconsistency in what is happening Re this bug and how it is affecting folk.



    Young folk like my son seem to be generally having it easier when they get it though. That seems consistent.



    Hope you get well soon.

  19. Petec



    I doubt there will be any justification found for this.



    I also doubt anyone will oppose it.

  20. JHB on 1ST SEPTEMBER 2021 3:39 PM



    “Our spending of £40m over two seasons”



    Still struggling with your numbers. Why do you consistently overstate our expenditure, understate our income and do the opposite with the Huns? Every time



    “Some do fantasise that Celtic is awash with money and stashing it for underhand purposes – reading this year’s annual statement will be educational & instructional to all.”



    I’m looking forward to your unique analysis.

  21. BURNLEY78 on 1ST SEPTEMBER 2021 4:00 PM


    Blogger GM







    What is the end game here ?







    To ensure that people who contract Covid from attending CP do not go down with serious, potentially life threatening, symptoms.



    That’s good for them personally, and also good for the rest of us because it reduces the likelihood of them being hospitalized.

  22. Burnley78,



    I don’t blame Celtic for any of this but Governments All over the World for some strange reason want to hurt its populace.



    I will still be trying to enter the Holy Ground no matter what.



    If most are double vaccinated what is the issue ……. well apart from Papers please.

  23. BURNLEY78




    Indeed the repercussions of this are not known by any means yet. I summarised a seminar about Post and Long COVID that I attended for our staff (we are occupational health) and there are so many variables that the scientists/medics do not know the medium effects never mind the real long term effects which are multi-factorial.



    One of the concerns is that people who get mild symptoms during the infection can develop different and more severe conditions in the medium-longer term.



    If J Titor can tell us what will happen in future, I will pass it on the the medics!

  24. Ernie



    Can you explain how someone who has been vaxed is less likely to pass on the bug than someone who has tested and shows negative ?

  25. ERNIE LYNCH on 1ST SEPTEMBER 2021 3:38 PM





    It’s like a broken record in here…



    “People” who just won’t give up….



    They try to drag this blog down…



    Why don’t we just move on…






    Because having failed to win the ten, and having lost the first Old Firm Game. and sitting 6th in the league having lost half the games played so far, and with a CL place available for winning the league Celtic have emerged from the transfer window with more money in the bank than before, having sold the most talented footballer in the league






    And what have you done about the above…,

  26. ernie,



    The MSM say that those who huvnae been vaccinated are most at risk of hospitaliation due to Covid19.



    Given that most of the ones most at risk and basically most people are now double vaccinated, this latest move says its All about Total Control in a very sinister way. IMHO.



    I Hope I’m wrong but this disnae look good.

  27. Eddie certainly wasn’t the most productive



    Kyogo looks like he’s the most talented footballer in the country at the moment.

  28. Big Georges Fan Club - Hail, Hail, Wee Oscar on



    Trent Alexander-Arnold was desperate to come to Celtic last night but was knocked back because of his name.


    As was Dominic Calvert-Lewin.





    And Alex Oxtail-Soup / Oxlade-Chamberlain