Ajer can follow van Dijk to top


Kristoffer Ajer made clear to Norwegian media his intentions to leave Celtic this summer. “With one year left of my contract, that would be the best solution for me and my club.  Something is going to happen this summer.”

Kris made it clear to the club two years ago he would not sign a new contract and has stuck to plan since.  For me, he was our stand-out Player of the Year last season and compares to the very best central defenders we have seen in the modern era.

At 23, Kris is one year older than Virgil van Dijk when he joined Celtic in 2013.  I would be hard pressed to pick a more impressive season between Kris’ last season or Virgil’s first.  Virgil was better in the air but I have never seen a Celtic central defender break through the lines as safely or effectively as Kris.  Virgil tried this but was not in the same class.

Just as we knew Virgil could do better than Southampton, Kris can do better than the apparently-keen Newcastle.  Liverpool could do worse than pair them up next season, he will play for a top EPL team eventually.  I hope we keep him for the European qualifiers.

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  1. Hendry is another centre half who is not brave enough in the air.


    He’s not a natural defender.



    We need a complete clear out .



    More importantly we need a scout and manager who are a good judge of a player.



    We are in this hole filled with shit ,because of our recruitment.




  2. “TINYTIM on 4TH JUNE 2021 3:08 PM


    I understand that Paul is doing the big sell on KA.


    But in my opinion VVD was and is on a different level from KA.”



    I`d go along with that.

  3. GeeBee – replying to your post from the other thread, I agree that timing is the biggest issue. If Ange is the Board’s man, I don’t see why he couldn’t have come in when Howe said no earlier in the year and had Kennedy’s 10 games to get started.

  4. SAINT STIVS on 4TH JUNE 2021 12:56 PM


    Letting Hendry go would be a mistake.



    Yes it would,but you can thank the vast majority of Celtic fans at the time,thank God,I was not one of them,that never gave the boy a chance.Too often played at RB,when he did get a game.Never given a chance to settle in.

  5. Ajer confirmed what we all knew – he wanted out last year, reluctantly stayed for the tilt at the ten, and is def leaving now. To his credit, he performed well last year unlike others who downed tools! I wish him the very best of luck for his career and, for us as a club, we’ll benefit from that!


    It does mean though that we’re really really short in defence. Julien isn’t likely to be back until August/September-time leaving us with Welsh and Biton as our only centre backs. Hendry may return but it’s really unlikely! So we’re short there. We also don’t have a right back (is Ralston still knocking around?) though O’Connor may be ok as back-up, and our left back options are Taylor and Bolingoli who surely must be for the off! So a whole new back 4 needed, plus a goalkeeper unless Barkas has a complete turnaround in form and confidence (unlikely but Ange is Greek so you never know I guess).


    Brown’s gone, and Christie and CalMac may be out the door too. Who knows what’s going to happen with Ntcham! We’d still have Soro, Turnbull and Rogic, but only really Luca Connel (looked good for Queens Park but a massive jump) and Shaw (a project signing) as cover, so a couple of CMs needed.


    In the wide areas we have Forrest and Mikey J. I’m not convinced Mikey is going to make it with us and think a loan somewhere may be the best option for him. Shved will probably stay in Belgium. So at least two wide players needed.


    Up front, Griff and Eddie will leave. I can’t see Ajeti and Bayo fitting into Ange’s system/philosophy so that’s two more to try to offload. At least 2 strikers needed.


    So in effect we need a whole new team – GK, back 4, couple of central midfielders, couple of wide players and a couple of strikers. Even then we’re probably still light squad-wise.


    A huge rebuild, with our manager not getting here this month in all likelihood. A good chance we’ll have players from Euros not fit enough and be starting our season with a line up of





    O’Connor; Welsh; Biton; Bolingoli;


    Soro; Connell; Rogic; Mikey J;


    Ajeti and Bayo.



    If we’re waiting for Ange, and it looks like we are, we need a DoF in now to get working the markets! With Eddie, Ajer, Hendry, Shved, CalMac, and Christie all departing, we ought to bring in about £35m which gives us some money to play around with, but largely still in the £3m per player market!



    Should also say well done to Ronny Deila for having an eye for a player,


    Yep that “dud” could certainly pick out a player.Another owing his career to Ronny,Martin Odegaard now at Arsenal on loan from R Madrid.A terrific wee midfielder.

  7. Ajer would need to play alongside VVD,to be a great CH.The boy cannot jump.We have all seen it.A bit of a drawback for a CH.

  8. Turkeybhoy- I’d have Ronnie back to head up the Academy/Colts team. His main problem was his lack of gravitas – Rodgers effectively carried on all the “24 hour athletes” stuff but had sufficient gravitas and clout to make sure it happened and players bought in!

  9. I think it’s up to Hendry if he stays or goes.



    I could be wrong but i think Hendre played in a back three at times same as Duffy, never suited to either.

  10. Big Kriss…. Great player, future Norway captain and will end up at a really big club



    But I will not be sad to see him go- he never tried a leg before the AC Milan game and by that time the dressing room was lost and the damage was done.



    Hopefully after last season we will never again keep players who want to leave to double or treble their wages.

  11. Ad on the last day of the 2021-2022 season, when they won the league, they chuckled and guffawed at how uptight they’d become only 11 months beforehand.

  12. They also tittered at the sudden level playing field the financial authorities had exacted on all spfl teams

  13. If Ajer was one of the “wantaways”, he sure didn’t play like one and while his defending wasn’t always top-drawer, there was nothing wrong with his attitude and his spot-kick and celebration against Hearts in the final still gets watched over and over.



    I wish him well and let’s hope the money is reinvested wisely. £10m for him, £11m for Frimpong, £1.3m for Hendry and £3.5m for Klimala – and that’s before Christie and Eddie. I’m aware some will have to be used for the Covid shortfall but with decent scouting and recruitment (no giggling there) a quality coach should be more than capable of putting an SPFL-winning side together.

  14. Ajer is a brilliant player – as long ad he has a commanding center beside him! He is not a leading center . unfortunately last season he had to play with centers who were not dominant. Celtic ‘s biggest issues was defense – due to covid and injuries we never got to play a settled back line. Bringing in Duffy was a mistake that no one seen coming!



    We need a rebuild from the back – I’m not convinced we can attract the players we need with the new guy! Thats why its so so important that the Dir Of Footy has credibility and ability to convince players to come to celtic.



    Martin O’neil would be a great call!!

  15. Transfer fees went mad in England and Europe, we’ll get more money for Ajer than we did for VVD.



    Neither of them escaped the ole “ I’d drive him to the airport masell “

  16. Go tell the Spartim on

    St Stivs



    They had the wrong coach implementing it 😉



    I’m not lambasting NL I’m stressing my importance in this plan and that only

  17. Cosy Corner Bhoy on

    Agree with those who say Ajer will NEVER make a CH.


    6’ 5’’ and jumps 5’ 6’’ ! Puts hands on almost every time he challenges.


    Although improved in not going to ground in tackles he is still prone to.


    A very good midfield player in the making which a good coach will bring out


    No chance of that since before our Phsyco moment. All downhill since then


    I wish him well as at least he tried most of last season .

  18. Hendry was put out on loan with a permanent move written in to the deal. the fee for the loan and the permanent transfer was announced as matching our purchase price. This was a great deal for Celtic for a player who wouldn’t play for us. He had previously been out to Australia and played 2 games and was then injured.



    Jack went to Oostende and in his last chance saloon managed to improve. There was no place for him at Celtic unless Jack was dumped by the Belgians. He performed well without the Celtic park Boo bhoys on his back and lo and behold Jack is seemingly worth more than his transfer fees.



    Jack played 15 games for Celtic it is unlikely he would be able to perform if 60,000 fans were growling every time the ball went near him,



    Ajer is clearly moving and we should have sold him last season when we would have got more money,



    Julien to me is a chancer, I think he was one of the want aways and cant wait for his big move to the EPL. He got injured by Duffy and no one could identify what his injury was, I suggest it was his nose was out of joint because of the salary Duffy was on. Oh he managed to catch Covid and collide with a post in a game for another lengthy lay off. Simunovic career was ended for less. We freed Simunonovic and he couldn’t get another club.



    Bitton is another who has no future and we should free or whatever. never a Centre back but a better player than he has showed for Celtic recently.



    Welsh is a good find and will improve over time.



    We need 2 new Centre backs. I think Porteous of Hibs is the best in scotland available.



    I wonder how Barry Coffey who was on loan at Cliftonville got on?

  19. FYI, Coffey is a midfielder and anything I’ve read on his loan spell has been decent.


    The Norwegian boy, Hjelde, on loan at Ross County is a centre back and he had excellent reviews. At Clyde, young Etoo, a left back, also had good reviews. Would be very optimistic to think they’ll be near the first team squad next year. Here’s hoping.

  20. Likeable guy certainly but journey finished with us imo, he doesn’t have the passion for defending that I would like, admittedly i probably have too high standards!. Actually preferred KA at right full/wing back.

  21. CardboardCSC on

    Bigbhoy. What makes you think Julian is a chancer and what evidence is there to say he wants away?

  22. Ziggydoc



    I forgot about Hjelde. John Hughes had good things to say about him. He maybe needs another loan spell but has great potential.



    I have heard little about Etoo but I would think he has a bit longer to go.



    The lad Lee O’Connor who was at loan at Tranmere was promised big things but instead was loaned to Thistle and then Tranmere without ever making a match day squad at Celtic.



    He has played for Republic of Ireland U17,U19, and U21 and has one full cup v New Zealand. He was U21 POY and has played 30 games at Tranmere. From reports I have heard there is no way back for him having been promised big things by and never given a chance. He reportedly wants a move.



    I hope that Postecoglou gives some of these young players a chance as Lenny in both his spells didn’t play young players. When the league was lost Kennedy showed little interest in the young players and ignored them. I dont remember Strachan nor Rodgers giving young players a chance.

  23. SFTB 3.49



    I wasn’t.



    I’m on record saying to several people that VVD is The Best CH I have ever seen in a Celtic shirt .



    Better than McNeil , McDonald ,McCarthy,Elliot ,Reiper ,and my personal favourite Bobo.



    Day I say he was even better than Paul McGuigan, Mark McNally ,Pierce O’ Leary ,and the Sunbed Kid Derek Whyte.



    VVD was a class above .







    Very little evidence one way or the other but Neil Lennon said there was a stream of players who wanted away.



    Do you know how many games he player last season? 9 starts.



    I suspect that all the French speakers Eduoard, N’tcham, Boli and Julien were some of the want aways who wanted to follow Dembele.



    I dont know what goes on in Lennoxtown and can only judge when coaches and but players make statements.



    I think Julien wants away or he is the French Boerrigter. When he did play I remember him not fancying the physical stuff and being troubled greatly by Lyndon Dykes.



    So all in all, not a solution to our Centre back ills for our 2nd highest incoming transfer

  25. Hjelde and all the young team playing out on loan, play them with a good formation and pressing game. We’ve watched youthful teams for years impact Europe. It’s our turn 🍀

  26. I can’t remember ever feeling so anxious about Celtic – the boards communication is either lacking or of poor quality. I can’t believe we are gambling with a manager who has no experience with a club of our size and no knowledge of the anti celtic culture within the league. Doing this from a position of strength could be possible – doing it when rangers are at their strongest and when celtic need a total rebuild looks like a gamble (best case) and sheer stupidity.



    Drop the Lawell strategy NOW.



    A man with connections, player pull and experience is exactly what’s needed for a rebuild!! If this is not the manager , it need to be the credentials of the Dir of Football.



    Very concerned!

  27. Martin O’Neill could pick a Centre Back .



    Bobo,Joos,Mjallby,Varga,Vega ,all performed well for us.



    MON is an idol of mine.




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