Benkovic and Ajer


Since picking up an injury at Celtic in January 2019, Filip Benkovic has completed five full league games, all for Bristol City.  The Leicester City player has made cup appearances, been used as an occasional substitute and seen lots of reserve football; there was only a short-term injury to mitigate the lack of game time in the intervening period.  This week his loan period at Cardiff City was terminated after his first and last appearance came against Wycombe a week ago.

He arrived on loan at Celtic in the summer of 2018 and looked every inch the 21-year-old prodigy.  He is 9 months older than Kristoffer Ajer and at that point was clearly more accomplished than our current most valuable defensive asset.

Kris has kicked on significantly in the years since, at 22, he is without doubt the best central defender to play in Scotland since Virgil van Dijk.  Filip will have earned more money than Kris, but even money will be no consolation, as unless he stages an unlikely turnaround at Leicester, his expected career earnings will be less than Kris’s.

There is a morality tale here, although it will be impossible for anyone to learn from it.  Filip left Dinamo Zagreb for the kind on money only available in England, irresistible to club and player.  His subsequent lack of progress will inhibit no one from following.

Having watched him perform, you and I know more about the player than most, there is certainly potential, although clearly there is more to the picture than was evident from his season at Celtic.  We have to assume people in Bristol and Cardiff saw a less impressive picture; potential is not always fulfilled.  Would you take him?  Of course you would, don’t even try to deny it.

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  1. Our scouting is an utter shambles . When will Lawell be held accountable for recruiting these scouting Duds?



  2. Celtic got shot of John Park when Rodgers came in and Congerton took it over , players we could have had McGinn Castagne which we failed to close deals with lies with the Accountant we now get players from his favoured agents so I doubt we scout, and if we doo how do you do it when a travel ban is on ?


    Signing players is tricky no doubt about it but we dont half waste fortunes on impaired registration as is the phrase on the balance sheet.

  3. If anyone thinks that Lawell is resigning anytime soon .



    Think again .



    The deflection away from his utter incompetence and culpability for destroying the 10 is well in motion .



    After Lisbon 67 .


    This should have been our most historic season ,


    We had circa £40m in the bank .


    Our nearest rivals were supposed to be broke.



    Never in the history of Scottish football has such a financial advantage been wasted .



    It’s utterly disgraceful





  4. CQNers woulda welcomed the highly inconsistent Denayer back even tho he set his sights way higher than us (btw saw his getting his drawers removed by Real Madrid in a pre-season match downunder)


    And we winger Paddy wotsisname?


    Yet we’d scorn an affordable Benkovic at a time when our backline couldn’t keep hens oot a close ?


    Fickleness prevails indeed.

  5. Weebobbycollins on

    Benkovic? No thank you. Similar to Paddy Roberts, couldn’t get a regular game anywhere after leaving us. There is a reason for that….and for that reason, I’m out!

  6. …no hit’n’hopes please……..


    Can’t we just get one or two real deals…………?



    Time is way past – we need to invest.




  7. TinyTim,



    Agree on poll.



    Edouard. Keep. ( Summer 21 exit )



    Lennon Sack ( Now – garden leave )



    Lawwell. Sack. ( Summer 21 exit )



    Desmond. Step up or step out.



    If fans don’t see very significant progress then withhold season ticket money. I am considering this with our tickets. I didn’t buy one Christmas present from Celtic for anyone for the first time in many years. However I did receive 2 presents which have subsequently being passed onto charity. I advised my daughter why I was doing it and she agreed.



    The only language Desmond & Lawwell understand is money. No changes frittering around the edges ; we all have a good idea of what is required. If the money keeps coming in Lawwell will keep milking the system. If we don’t drive the change now next season will be worse with a rejuvenated Ibrox club ( Lawwells strategic plan —- not sure the gutless nodding ducks on the Board really knew the extent of Lawwells gameplan—-was Lawwell flying his own kite for personal gain ? ).



    Oh and the Sevco board are already planning their CL qualification campaign and are lining up signings for the summer. My Murray Park mole tells me quite a bit and they are planning a step change in the calibre of signings —- don’t be surprised if there are additional investors as well.



    We can’t blame this on a failed politician —— rather a failed CEO.



    Big changes…

  8. jimbob71 & little Miss jimbob on




    We do our scouting and selling through the SMSM now dontcha know.



    Alfie Doughty thru Sky Sports, Eduaord leaving us through the Scottish Sun. Click, click, click.



    Seems to be the way forward……

  9. squire danaher on

    Lucky Cody






    Not another penny. It’s the only language they understand.

  10. The Battered Bunnet on




    Have you seen this? It was leaked to the HSJ last night, and comprises the briefing given yesterday to London NHS Trusts by the NHS England Director responsible for the region.



    It says, in the best case scenario, London will be around 2000 beds short of demand by the end of next week:



    The best case involves opening the (mothballed) Nightingale, repurposing specialist hospitals (ophthalmology for example) and requisitioning private hospitals amongst other ‘mitigations’, while demand reduces from the current level.



    The best case scenario…

  11. squire danaher on




    Nice to see you back on the field.






    Benkovic, God love him, has started 5 league games in 2 seasons.



    So this what we’re getting in January?

  12. WeeBobbyCollins,



    Getting someone who can’t get a game elsewhere is exactly what our business will be and has been – Ajeti, Duffy, Laxalt, Weah, Benkovic, Forster, Roberts and all the way back to Robbie Keane and Tommy Graveson. They all come under that category.



    I’m ok with that. The rich are stuffed full of talent who can’t get a game.




  13. The Battered Bunnet on

    JJ, from last thread,



    As I understand things, in the absence of an effective vaccine, the series of lockdowns and releases would continue until the virus had got round most people for the first time, and thereafter became endemic. The number of cycles would be determined by how many people were infected in each round.



    Let’s hope that this peak is the last and that the vaccine does the job.

  14. Back to Basics - Glass Half Full on

    What is the basis for the suggestion that we’ll lose money on Edouard?

  15. Paul 67,



    “Of course you would, don’t even try to deny it ”



    What is it with wanting former players back ? Lazy or useless scouting. ?


    No I would not take Benkovic back.


    As we build for the future we want ambitious hungry players with the correct attitude who actually want to play for us.



    More generally we do not need injury prone players who have an issue with plastic pitches.



    We can turn ongoing negativity around by implementing inevitable change early, getting rid of those who do not want to be with us and utilising youth with a combination of well scouted buys.



    Oh and resourcing a sharp PR person.



    HH to all.

  16. This article reads to me as, ‘Ajer is leaving…if we’re really lucky, we might get benkovic’



    HH jg

  17. !!Bada Bing!! on 7th January 2021 1:01 pm



    Birmingham will run out of vaccine tomorrow…and so it begins…




    My SIL works at a big health centre in West Lothian.



    Says they got a delivery of vaccines this week………100 doses.


    One hundred.



    Over 80’s in her practice, almost 300.




  18. Back to Basics - Glass Half Full on

    TBB – thank you for posting link.



    So, if I read it right



    Best case scenario


    (based on a growth in demand LOWER than current trends)



    AFTER mitigation



    is 20% shortfall in CRITICAL care bed capacity



    In London in 11 days time?






    If only the UK Government had been given, oh say, 10 months notice this would happen?



    They could have methodically created additional capacity.






    Sighing heavily as I write this.



    Incompetence leading to thousands of avoidable deaths.



    Happened in 2020.



    Happening now.

  19. Back to Basics - Glass Half Full on

    Philbhoy – Lol.



    I wonder if he said same to his new agent?



    (In French of course)



    “Sign me up. I’m playing like a tit”.



    Form is temporary.



    Class is permanent.



    Odsonne is a class player.




    Who is going to give us what you think he’s worth with the uncertainy surrounding professional football at this time?



    Plus the fact his form has dropped off, some say dramatically, in recent months.



    I can’t see us getting aKT type offer anytime soon. IMO.

  21. Shocking poll… Turns my stomach actually………. Tiny Tim… Correct recruitment department is poor…. I don’t like this way of purchasing players with someone in charge who had little knowledge of celtic or Scottish football and what is needed beyond ability…..



    Gerrards purchases lately all physically strong.. Fit system.. Have a degree of toughness… Its like he’s learned something in 2 and half years or his recruitment team have..


    Benko…. Not for me


    Ajer… Correct… Head and shoulders above anything else…… Oh but he isn’t a defender

  22. No properly run business would allow such wasteful spending by a senior employee.



    No not one…………………

  23. So let’s sign a player, who Lennon didn’t pick when he had the chance, and when he won’t be manager next season? If anyone is still left,who thinks Lawwell signs players for Celtic, take one step forward….while the Club is going backwards at an alarming rate.

  24. Bhoyjoebelfast on

    Two to pass the time:


    1) Which player scored Celtic’s first Premier Division hat trick (1975)?


    2)What was Sean Fallon’s only final as caretaker manager?


    Heard this from rte radio.Some caller nicknamed Trump the archaeologist.


    His career is in ruins!



  25. Our scouting system ,we do have one ,is a shambles.


    We will be told that as they cannot go to games we will just sign loan players we had previously.

  26. Rock Tree Bhoy on

    JAMESGANG on 7TH JANUARY 2021 1:35 PM



    This article reads to me as, ‘Ajer is leaving…if we’re really lucky, we might get benkovic’






    I have it on very good authority that Paul was on the blower to big Peter about 11.30 am this morning…

  27. Dessybhoy.


    Only praised for being a genius on here .



    I don’t know what year he was appointed as CEO.


    But I would bet that we didn’t win more than 50% of the league available to us between the time he was appointed and Rangers went into liquidation.



    He is the most fortunate CEO or board member ,in our history .



    It has only taken the new club 4 seasons to overtake us .



    How many times did we qualify for the CL group stages in our 9 seasons ?


    Against clubs with much smaller resources , and having the advantage of being seeded.



    He has blown potential CL income of circa £200m .



    He has been anmitigated disaster.



    Never learning from his previous failings .



    Not once did we adequately invest in players to try and improve our CL group qualification, in time for the qualifying rounds.



    You just watch how Rangers plan and invest for this season’s qualifiers.



    Utterly incompetent.


    Celtic man that he obviously is .




  28. Rock Tree Bhoy on

    there are top quality football players who thrive at certain clubs yet fall flat on there face at other clubs,



    Benkovic could be one of them,



    for that reason I would take Benkovic back and Paddy Roberts as well.

  29. Rock Tree Bhoy





    It’s St Peter we need! Though increasingly, St Jude!



    HH jg

  30. I’ll deny it as Paul challenges us to.


    If he can’t get a game for Bristol City or Cardiff, for whatever the reason, then not for me.

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