Being prepared to trade


For £7.5m + add-ons which could see the final figure rise to £10m, Josip Juranovic is only the third most expensive full back we have sold in recent years.  After the purchase fee of £2.5m from Legia Warsaw and the sell-on clause to pay, he was not the most profitable of the successful players we have sold.

Notions that he would go to Barcelona, Atletico Madrid or Chelsea were found to be fanciful.  No one with substantial budget followed through with an interest, so Celtic and Josip were left with a more modest return from Union Berlin – who occupy nose-bleed heights in this season’s Bundesliga.  Only our dear friends Eintracht (on goal difference) and Bayern are ahead of them.

The only trophy Celtic did not win last season saw us eliminated after Jura went off injured.  Much of his time at the club was spent in an unaccustomed left back role, which he fulfilled well, until a recent aberration.

What is most telling about this transfer is that it took place to begin with.  We could have sat tight for another 18 months before offering the player an improved contract and listening to offers, as he entered the final 2 years of his deal.  This, or offering higher wages earlier, has been our modus operandi since Martin O’Neill’s time.

This time, we recruited Alistair Johnston before the window opened, ensuring the only pressure on the club was that it did not end the window with a depreciating surplus of right backs.  The early signs from Johnston are good, he was exceptional in his only real test so far, at Ibrox.  We can hope he is an upgrade on Jura.  For now, that remains an acknowledged risk.

I like that we were prepared (in the truest sense of the word) to trade.  Prepared in the sense that we went into the window with a replacement identified and signed, with strong interest in our player that followed through.  If we are to maximise our potential, we need to do much more trading.  They all have a price and they should all have a number of alternates we can bid for, if that price is offered.  No sentiment.

Good luck, Josip, hope we see you back for the Paradise Windfall draw one day.

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  1. Tiny Tim




    “There is no plan to build a stronger squad .




    The plan is to generate income from purchase to sell.”







    If you start with a false assumption you will always deduce a false conclusion.




    Jura leaving does not indicate that we “only” interested in player trading or that players only come here with a “stepping stone” viewpoint. It is much more fundamental than that.




    After Kieran Tierney left, nobody should be in any doubt about Celtic’s position in the food chain. If a Celtic diehard, somebody who would take his place on the terracing, after retirement, will move on to a “bigger” club. The bigger is in terms of financial power AND competitive edge- wages and chances of going to a team with a better chance of moving on to even bigger clubs.




    It doesn’t matter how romantic you are about Celtic’s “bigness” and we are a true wonder as a club with a huge, enthusiastic, loyal and resilient support, we live in the reality of a food chain. We lost Dalglish, Hay and Macari pre-Bosman. We lost McClair, McInally and LP Merde in the same summer, and a whole host of others afterBosman- Van Hooydonk, Viduka, Di Canio, Cadete, Larsson, Sutton, Petrov, Dembele, Van Dijk etc. Hell, we even lose out to Southampton and Bournemouth, and now Union Berlin.




    It is not the absence of a squad building plan; it is that we cannot build a squad out of reluctant conscripts. If they want to go they get to go- even at the big clubs. United suffered by letting C. Ronaldo go (and they suffered when they got him back too old) but they couldn’t stop it. Barca couldn’t stop Messi going and PSG may not prevent Mbappe from going as he tries to land a CL winner’s medal.




    It hurts to see good players go but there is a plan.




    A hopeful plan to keep going and replace with someone who is as good for can be coached to be as good. Ange isn’t here to do player trading; he believes he can use Jura’s money to get another ambitious and talented younger player in. Time will tell if Johnston (plus Ralston) gives us sufficient cover for Juranovic but it is , by no means, already a proven failure of a decision.




    But, here’s the killer, even Ange is subject to these market pressures. At his age and with his profile boosted by his time with us, he, too, will be tempted to gear up to a club in a higher league or even one with European prospects.




    I am worried about this summer and about Ange succession planning.




    If I was asked to say who is our most valuable employee currently- well I love Jota but……. it is clearly Ange Postecoglou who will be hardest to replace. He has made us a more attractive team, a braver team and a happier team and support. I am loving this season, despite fears for our immediate future.

  2. bournesouprecipe on

    What happened to the Monza money?



    Thought Josip Juranovic overall was average for Celtic, one good season which in the first half of this season, he never got close to. On that basis to receive a fee of £10M after 15 months and 50 or so games, is a fantastic bit of business. Do the clubs that were in for him suggests just how good the player is?



    Four times what you pay in the Celtic market is good by any standard especially when uniquely we had already replaced the player with another one international player for a similar cost. Stagnation is no longer allowed at Celtic, look at how it mistreated us, in the recent past?



    Players come, and players will be allowed to go – see Ange Postecoglu. Juranovic is the reminder that emotional ties to Parkhead are for supporters and sentiment is a non starter, it’s all about the weekly wage, always has and always will be.

  3. “Agile and aggressive”. Very encouraging that the new plan that was talked about is being executed at the first opportunity.



    It sounds like it’s everyone’s plan – the business executives and Ange are all on board. A new way of backing your manager.



    And it’s not just for the bling that Paul67 would talk about. Almost every new addition to the squad is young, has development in them and just fits in and contributes. The days of aging epl “names” who come to Glasgow for a pay day and a taste of the “old firm” seem long ago, at least at Celtic.

  4. There’s been a lot of speculation about a buy out clase for JJ or some other clause in the contract that we wanted rectified thus opening renegotiations with years to spare.



    This contractual oversight was rumoured to be the reason McKay was dispensed with.



    This article today seems to dispel this, I still struggle with giving players 5 year contracts then wanting to resign them 18 months in.

  5. The fee is an excellent one. There’s hardly any market for players with Juras profile.



    His agent and Celtic have done great work



    One downside is that other Celtic players will look at this and start thinking about moves. Abada recently changed his agent to Juras which probably means he’ll be after a move for his client soon. But that can work well for everyone as we’ve seen.

  6. A lot of the players come to us on the basis that we can gìve them a stage which helps them get into a top 5 league. If we did not offer that stage most would not come here in the first place. Its the price we pay if we want to attract the best players we can. We could sign lesser players who will not attract attention from the big leagues but that’s not a path I like to think about.



    This issue is not a problem exclusive to celtic, every big club in every smaller league has the same problem. Worth remembering we do it to teams further down the food chain than us.



    As an aside, the change to european football will increased group stages participation and will hopefully help celtic by adding more competitive games for players to compete in. It should also help celtiç to negotiate better commercial deals which in turn could make it easier to hold on to our better players a little longer but players will go regardless.



    2 of hearts, Aberdeen, hibs or Dundee United need to show real ambition. They need to get regular European income over multiple years to make the domestic league more competitive. The spfl premier league needs to be stronger if we want our best players to stay longer. Hearts are pushing hardest to be one of the 2 or 3.



    A better domestic league, more regular European football and increased income is the only way to help improve if not resolve the situation.




  7. Ange is key. That’s the worry if he goes. Crossing my fingers for at least one more season in the CL, should we get there (hopefully), and definite progress to be demonstrated. If not…



  8. The Blogger Formerly Known As GM on

    Yep, this is where it gets interesting.



    For the model to work AJ and Oh need to be upgrades on JJ and GG.

  9. The strange thing here is that most of us would agree that ange is key, but to my knowledge he’s on a one year rolling contract.



    So we’re trying to tie players down with 3 years left on their contract while allowing our most valuable asset to possibly go for minimal compensation because he’s on an annual fixed term contract.

  10. When I see the word ‘trade’ in conjunction with Celtic I feel queasy and get visions of Jock Brown. I’ll not sleep tonight.



    I heard the Dominic McKay thing was that he was instructed not to proceed with the Juranovic signing at the terms and conditions on offer, and did so anyway – presumably on the basis he believed it would make us money anyway? And it got him the sack. Is that about right?

  11. I’ve just watched a YouTube video highlights of Oh Hyeon Gyu, and I think we might have just bought Haksabanovic

  12. Back to Basics - Glass Half Full on

    Ange is indeed key.



    Don’t know him. Never met him.



    From selected public utterances though



    1. He seems totally invested in this approach



    2. He seems to have less emotional attachment to individuals than e.g. Neil



    3. He fancies his ability to pick a player, absorb a selected player into his philosophy and make him an effective contributor to the squad.




    If Giakoumakis does leave, IMHO, this represents the end of a recruitment chapter which started June-August 2021.



    Squad needed players.



    Ange had no time.



    He gave the nod to signings on that basis.



    The phases of his squad management “out the way” since have been fairly well defined



    1. Incumbents not in his plans


    Barkas, Bolingoli, Ajeti, Soro, Jullien, Rogic, Bitton – out you go



    2. Young lads signed quick but won’t make it.


    Shaw, Scales, Urhoghide – out you go



    3. Expensive signings (relatively) who’ve done a really good job but are not part of Ange’s vision or (understandably) want a last pay day


    Juranovic, Giakoumakis – out you go.

  13. BIG JIMMY on 23RD JANUARY 2023 6:36 AM





    Kinglubo 7.17



    Big Jimmy, Belmont Brian and Coneybhoy have a rival for worst jokes. HH





    Hey ….wait a minute….I have posted that Joke on here a couple of times, PLUS…Ive also told it ” LIVE”.



    Its a great wee Joke…I never tire telling it.







  14. FRIESDORFER on 23RD JANUARY 2023 12:42 PM


    Big Jimmy





    Can I have a signed photo please…














    Not a problem mate….Just send a TENNER ASAP ?







    For the model to work AJ and Oh need to be upgrades on JJ and GG.



    That’s never what a player trading model has been about. It’s nearly impossible to continually sell players for a high fee and replace them with cheaper but better.



    For a successful, working, model look at Ajax. They bought Antony, Martinez and Haller aged 21, 20 and 26 for a combined total of €45m and sold them 2 or 3 years later, after considerable contributions from all of them for a total of €180m. They went to Dortmund and United. Their replacements came from Spurs, the Huns and Leipzig for a total of €70m. Not better but younger, with development in them and enough time for another big move.



    The next big sale for Ajax is Kudus who destroyed the Huns in the champions league and is valued at €50m. They bought him for €9m as 19 year old three seasons ago in the same window they sold Ziyech and van der Beek for €80m and bought Haller and Antony.



    It can work in cycles, Ajax are having a bad season by their standards, but helped by buying Bassey, who’s getting some terrible stick there at the moment, as a placement for Martinez. But it works for them over an extended period both domestically and in Europe

  16. It could be that our recent transfer success in the far East is down to either all or in part to Mark Lawwell.



    Or, it could be that we’re availing of the expert knowledge in that area of Ange postecoglue.



    So losing him would be a blow to both our recruitment and coaching teams.



    Let’s hope we’re trying to get him signed up long term.



    For all the flak Rodgers now receives, he still left us £9 million richer when he left the building because he signed a long term contract.

  17. Not stealing BRRB’s thunder sittin in Vogue Bar as a little pit stop,much Celtic regalia on the walls.never been in before.quiet at mo,but i bet would be jumping after title win.good Celtic bar




  18. SAINT STIVS on 23RD JANUARY 2023 2:36 PM



    How far has our country come since then?






    The Church of Scotland has apologised for its anti Irish Catholic rhetoric.



    Get back to us when the SNP have done the same.

  19. I am never as good at the bookies as big jimmy.



    But if they would take bets on which poster would comment on that menace post well I would have been on a winner.



    I am away to count how many Orangemen are labour councilors

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