Astonishing achievement finding Jota after 9 career starts


So much was in play when Jota signed his permanent contract with Celtic a year ago.  12 months earlier, Celtic agreed a loan with option to buy deal for £6.5m with Benfica.  They did not, however, have a corresponding agreement with the player.

By summer 2022, Benfica, Celtic and Jota all knew that that £6.5m fee massively undervalued the winger.  Benfica could do nothing about it, Celtic made their contract offer and Jota’s agent went out to market looking for a better deal.

The agent’s problem was that no other club had a £6.5m option, Benfica asked for a far higher fee, which inhibited the player contract value.  Wage offers were largely on a par with Celtic’s deal, so Jota signed on for five years.

Five years is a long contract for a player who has a notion they could get more unhindered by a transfer fee, so the deal took on a few clauses, one of which we heard about at the weekend, a wage hike triggered by a £25m offer.

The whole Jota experience has been a fantastic endorsement of where Celtic are right now.  The player made a career total of 9 starts in senior football before coming to Celtic.  NINE.  STARTS.  We found him, agreed an expensive option, despite the lack of faith shown by Real Valladolid the previous year and parent club Benfica.  How is that even possible?  What level of granular information and analytical skills do you have across thousands of players to be able to find that golden nugget?  It is an astonishing achievement – we are operating at a genuinely elite level.

Contract negotiations in 2021 and 2022 were perfect – can you imagine feeling good if we allowed Benfica to cancel our option for a £1m fee?  He leaves for a reported fee of £25m, a new high, if not significantly higher than Kieran Tierney’s.

If you think, “Good deal but would be better if he stayed another year”, respectfully, you are not thinking strategically.  The slower you are at turning players around and reinvesting in the squad, the slower progress the team is going to make.  We have to commit to strategy of there is no point in having one.  Always be ready to trade!

All the best, Jota.  We’ll hopefully see you back to do the Paradise Windfall.

Michael Nicholson has the showbiz touch.  I don’t believe for a moment that the (fantastic) Kyogo contract was finalised this morning.  We will reinvest some of the Jota money into new contracts for existing players, Kyogo’s new four-year deal is the first, Michael had it lined up waiting to press the button today.

He is a player who could do a job at any club in England, and while he is not a direct replacement for Harry Kane, I was worried Spurs would try to pick him up.  I’m delighted at the news.  He is a star of a human being, never mind a footballer.  Well done, Celtic.  More on Kyogo later this week.

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  1. Would love McTominay in our side – a y’all strong athletic boy that can play and has goals in him too. Most likely too much for us but he is a model of what we need in midfield but they don’t come cheap if at all…….

  2. theBHOYfromU.N.C.L.E on

    Can see a long queue forming for better contracts amongst the squad, most notably James McCarthy.

  3. HOT SMOKED on 4TH JULY 2023 12:07 PM


    DENIABHOY on 4TH JULY 2023 10:28 AM


    Just what I thought !!




    Quite a few on here have said they will never `love` any Celtic player again. I think Kyogo will test their resolve on that matter :-))

  4. Paul67,



    Before we start slapping the backs of each other, elite level means we operate this at scale and not as a one-off, which is where we are at.



    Be interesting to see where we are at the end of this window in terms of trading – we’re £25m in black, with a spend of £4m on 2 punts. What’s the target? – Some outlay spent on contracts but I think there is a real chance of more first team players if we are moving to elite – my guess is Hatate (too much noise), Abada (far too much noise), Starfelt (long distance relationships don’t work) as 3 most under threat.



    Looking forward to seeing how we apply incomings next too.



    Interesting times.




  5. Difficult to know if our recent signings are ready to be 1st picks or are here as squad players to be developed as I and assume most haven’t seen enough to take a view.


    However we for sure need some straight in starters. If we wanted to improve from last season we needed to add some extra quality (2/3?) now we are down minimum two starters the need is greater (4/5?) so let’s hope plenty of homework already done…….

  6. Smart smart business. When we had to wait for him to sign last summer you feared the worst, Jorge Mendez’s agency doesn’t mess around, but we got the numbers right and the pull of the ‘tic did the rest.



    Probably a £30m difference in the business done with Jota and Kent. The teams will reflect that for a while to come,

  7. And now they release the Celtic kit pictures with Kyogo modelling. We all knew he was in the originl shoot.



    Blinkin drama merchants……




  8. The Battered Bunnet on

    James McCarthy has a further 2 years remaining on his contract. What a waste of time and money that is.

  9. quadrophenian on

    ‘What level of granular information and analytical skills do you have across thousands of players to be able to find that golden nugget? ‘



    Was the elite player unearthing machinery broke the day we signed the injury blighted Mr McCarthy on a four yearer??



    BTW, Kyogo looks tip-top in that great new kit too!



    One man’s honking is another fella’s bold, fresh statement. HH

  10. glendalystonsils on

    CELTIC40ME on 4TH JULY 2023 12:16 PM



    The difference between Jota and Kent is in more than monetary value . Jota exudes positive qualities , modest , gifted , a smile never far from his face . A positive role model for the club . Kent , the opposite , a nasty scowling sneak of the sort Sevco often seem to favour .


    Paul is right . When signing players we look for good human beings as well as good footballers .

  11. kevinlasvegas on

    Mccarthy is a weird weird signing.



    Same age as mooy. Miles off it.



    Lost my dad at the same time as him, does mess you up but I’ve kicked on and I don’t have the honour to play for Celtic or have millions in the bank he has. I guess its down to the man himself.







  12. The Battered Bunnet on

    Since we’re talking elite performance…



    We need a save-making goalkeeper, a centre half the match for CCV, and a left back as good/better than Johnson is at rb.



    We need a lock-picking central mid and a credible alternative to Kyogo.



    And now we need to replace Jota with same and find another one for the other side of the pitch.



    And whoever we sign, one of them needs to be a dead ball specialist.



    Let’s be havin’ you, elite performance.

  13. bournesouprecipe on

    Another first for Celtic



    Instead of being revered by Scottish football for bringing riches and putting it on the map, we’re envied. £6.5M Jota waves a fond farewell, and fetched


    30M thanks to wee poor Celtic, and our ‘abysmally bad’ scouting system, who leap from one record to another. Supporters who faced up to floating pitches that never floated, retractable roofs that never retracted and facing firing squads that could not otherwise be afforded, Celtic have come a long, long way using Legitimate Rd and left Scotland behind.



    Home grown or Portuguese our record fees are in pounds sterling, and they equate to the level and quality of player Brendan Rodgers is now able to afford. Inflated transfer valuations like the one Ittihad have just paid Celtic, will be wide berthed as we rely on a scouting network that’s working quite nicely in the grand old scheme of things



    As ever CSC

  14. kevinlasvegas on

    I’d imagine Brendan doing a lot of evaluating this week.



    Paying off Mccarthy and ajeti would save a fair bit, must be cheaper than keeping them for next two years.



    Soro and ghost gloves will be gone as well.



    Must save 80k on wages at a guess. Mccarthy on 30k+ alone




  15. Tom McLaughlin on

    Having seen the new Celtic shirt first hand instead of in pictures, I reckon it’s a smashing strip. A work of art. All it takes is a bit of imagination.

  16. !!Bada Bing!! on

    Zimbabwe 37/4 chasing 285,Scotland could qualify for the Cricket World Cup………

  17. KLV,



    Rodgers, having watched a lot of our games. Having been extensively briefed will not be using this week on the redundant. He may be chatting with those attracting interest but he should be genuinely sticking McCarthy, Soro, M Johnston, Scales and the rest into a wee corner of Lennoxtown to play with themselves.



    I really hope we don’t have to see them playing those meaningless ‘shop window’ friendlies to get them ready for selling. Just eff off ra lotta them…




  18. a work of art ?



    Picasso in a temper tantrum could have designed better



    i looked at the video again, callum does not look a happy bunny modelling it at all.

  19. quadrophenian on

    TBB – As for an alternative/supplementary CH, I’m mibby the only one in favour of signing Rob Holding.


    Natural left footer, big lad, mibby needs a paternal arm around his shooders (BR speciality); he could be good in centre defence or even on the left of a back 3 if wee Greg was deemed too wee for some specific fixtures.



    I feel for James Mac; him being a fan and all, but all that dosh provides plenty compensation for his ‘plight’.



    Anyway, in Brendan and the amazing granular information and analytical skill contraption we trust.

  20. Bada Bing



    Great fight back by Scotland.



    Amazing crowd scenes.



    For a country supposedly integrated these crowd look very segregated to me.



    Only 1 white person I have seen in with the black crowd was a wee ‘downs’ lad.



    Not a single black person in the whites area ?



    A bit odd.



    Come on Scotland. What a chance to play in a World Cup Finals in India.

  21. The Saudis wish for Mustafa Jota has become a reality and our 23 year old is about to become a multi millionaire in the months ahead and now he has to decide whether his Lamborghini will be petrol or an electric model. If Abada also departs and joins our wing wizard it will be a big drain on our goal scoring ability, thankfully there’s good news about Kyogo and his new contract this morning.

  22. fourstonecoppi on

    TOM MCLAUGHLIN on 4TH JULY 2023 12:44 PM


    Having seen the new Celtic shirt first hand instead of in pictures, I reckon it’s a smashing strip. A work of art. All it takes is a bit of imagination.



    And serious drugs!

  23. 67 European Cup Winners on

    I am a big believer in our buy cheap sell high strategy


    This is a huge difference between us the them


    There is some moral questions about doing business with Saudi Arabia – but that’s for another site


    £25m is £25m and I am not sure we can turn our backs on that cash



    The big thing for me on this deal is not the money but the destination



    Celtic are brilliant at upselling our talent – in reality most end up as English Premier League journeymen



    Virgil van Dyke went on to another level – also Frimpong looks like the real deal but I struggle to name many more that have flourished post Celtic


    Tierney possibly holds his own but even he struggles to get in at Arsenal


    Juranovic could be good in Germany


    Ajer I think injured


    Edouard at Palace has not set the world on fire


    Dembele did well at Lyon but now what


    Armstrong Christie and a few others went on to bigger contracts but with lesser game time



    Perhaps the Jota deal to Saudi Arabia is the start of a new destination market for Celtic players



    It’s a shame richer leagues can simply make a cash call to Celtic and raid our talent, but that’s life


    And in most cases it’s the end of the glory years for the player


    It’s downhill all the way to the bank




  24. To think, we will now be eternally associating that ugly top with our Europa leaguie winning team in May 2024….




  25. Treble winners Celtic sell Jota for a huge profit and sign our goal scorer on a long contract. Funny day to be getting angry about very minor mistakes like James McCarthy or focusing on the need for improvements in the team. 8 weeks to go, a new Manager with the opportunity to take his time and puck players for the next three years and beyond.



    Credit where credits due.

  26. 67 European Cup Winners on



    Juranovic Ajer Van Dyke Tierney


    Frimpong Armstrong Christie


    Jota Dembele Edouard



    All richer than Callum McGregor but how many successful ?




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