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. Melbourne Mick on




    What if we offered a lifetime membership of the best Celtic club


    on the planet, and Paddymacoz will administer free tuition of


    the Michael Flately training program of the Irish quick step.


    You know that one when it’s your round and you skip to the loo.


    H.H. Mick

  2. jimbob71 & little Miss jimbob on




    The short sleeved Celtic jersey with the long sleeved under armour top does my head in!!



    I’m with you on that!

  3. Melbourne Mick on

    Ta JTMB



    Thought it was just me, but when you see the old photos


    of Bobby Murdoch ( sigh ) how we need a Bhoy like that.


    I digress, don’t know about embody else but when I played


    I hated anybody trying to stand out by wearing anything but the


    team colours.


    H.H. Mick

  4. Lol MICK – don’t need to convince me but for these young millionaires, only money talks.


    We were in the water today; did ye see the news report of the shark at Aspendale !


    Different take on the water being a wee bit nippy ;)


    If Benkovic was mentored by a great defender – like a Mjallby for eg – he could be a superstar.


    Do we have a great defensive coach like Johann hanging round ?? HH




    Yes, with you on top and long white sleeved shirt underneath – go long sleeved or short sleeved.



    Having said that, a mia culpa…



    …that’s exactly what I do, most of my Celtic shirts are short sleeved and I don’t like wearing short sleeved anything, outwith the hottest days of the year.



    But for the Squad… definietly;)



    Hail Hail

  6. Melbourne Mick on




    That shark at Aspendale ? sure that was Paddy looking


    for new members, take it he never got a bite 8-))


    H.H. Mick

  7. I’m just sitting here thinking!



    Anybody else hope we don’t sign any new players in this window?

  8. Melbourne Mick on




    Have we actually got a long sleeved Celtic top?


    Don’t think I seen any when ordering the weans Christmas




    H.H. Mick

  9. MM – Paddy needed to get further up to Sandy beach where the water wiz just lovverly!



    Just wondering here…some coincidence that Shane, Hatem, Jullien and Laxalt’s defensive attributes have stalled while here; mibby coaching’s the common denominator.

  10. Melbourne Mick on




    Nice try, but big Shane passing a simple ball out of defence, omg.


    Much as I luv the big ghuy, memories of Willie Garner.




    H.H. Mick

  11. DOWNFORSAM on 8TH JANUARY 2021 10:44 AM


    I’m just sitting here thinking!







    Anybody else hope we don’t sign any new players in this window?



    Yes,I wouldn’t let Lawwell spend any more money.

  12. Apart from Ian Bankier ,their is 3 or 4 on the Celtic Board who seemingly are true Celtic Supporters,but just on there hands and say nothing,ie how they see the way the players are coached and perform on the pitch,as for Neil Lennon personally i hope the Board of Directors don’t back him in this transfer window.

  13. Why are we being spoon fed stories recently about young PR and FB coming back on loan.



  14. melbourne mick



    Got to go along with you on the mix of short sleeve Celtic top and the Pa Broon semmits. Looks like something that you bought at the Barras. No, in the winter the Bhoys should were full sleeve shirts, lined if the poor souls are feeling the cold, and the more hoops the better. Someone on here posted, in the same vein, a picture of Bertie Auld in the full regalia, immaculate. Lisbon in the summer, different matter, the Bhoys all looked fantastic in short sleeves in the sun. Winter in Scotland? Well if you spent a fortune on your tattoos…..

  15. My friends in Celtic,



    While we have not given up on the league, the current situation gives us a unique opportunity.


    If change is inevitable then we will have a new manager. It does not make any sense to sign new players at this time, but it does give us a chance to promote from within.



    For years due to continued historic achievement we have been reluctant to play our fringe players in meaningful games.


    Domestic cup games have been as vital as league games meaning players like Callum McGregor do not get a rest and become jaded.



    Circumstances have forced NFL to introduce fringe players and we have unearthed some crackers ie Soro and Turnbull.



    Let’s give youth it’s chance and who knows we may be another team to contradict Alan Hansen.




  16. Melbourne Mick on




    Didn’t he look immaculate?


    Think the Celtic top is magical, maybe someday I’ll open


    up about my best days wearing the hoops.


    Need to get the princess distracted, she knows how those


    green and white stripes turn the ghirls into cougars.


    H.H. Mick

  17. Bhoy From The Boyne on

    GREENPINATA @ 11:23 AM



    Hope to see Scott Robertson & Ewen Henderson get their opportunity next season.



    I fear this could be Callum McGregor’s last season with us. Final chance for him to increase his salary to 80k+ a week maybe and play in the EPL,might be a lure too strong for both him and club to refuse, particularly in post covid world if hefty transfer fee involved. BR & others will probably be circling.



    I for one would wish him the very best if he wanted to move on after this season.


    Tremendous talent.

  18. MM


    What is wrong with people being concerned about the club and voicing their opinions, its a Celtic blog I’m puzzled why folk only want to romanticise what Celtic is and avoid the reality of todays situation which is totally self inflicted caused by those running the show.


    That will include negative comments as those negative comments are appropriate caused by frustration not entitlement, I appreciate you are down in Melbourne but do you not think that in order to improve we need to be self critical, the club is a shambles in my opinion fortunes squandered on inappropriate purchases with those responsible carrying on as usual.

  19. hope we are not turning into a club for all the waifs and strays in the football world that see us as an easy touch.

  20. Melbourne Mick on




    Don’t think anythings changed, keep the price high because he plays


    in the Engerlunder moneyball system.


    If he was brought up in the Celtic youth programs would he still be there


    considering the young Bhoys we let go.


    Declan Gallaher ?H.H. Mick

  21. FAIRHILL BHOY on 8TH JANUARY 2021 11:17 AM


    Why are we being spoon fed stories recently about young PR and FB coming back on loan.








    It’s the usual deflection puff pieces, they think we’re daft.

  22. Melbourne Mick on




    Don’t know where you’re going with the ” people concerned about the


    club and voicing their opinions ”


    There’s a whole load of strong bloggers on here and I don’t think my


    feeble attempts at being the blog enforcer would be noticed.


    However, I’ll attempt to answer your post to me.




    I’m with you, why should we romanticise about past glories?


    Maybe you can tell me why we shouldn’t?




    I think by your post you’re a young bhoy, no probs, probably


    used to success year after year.


    I’ve no problem with that, but all I want you to appreciate is


    some of us old Tims went years without any success but we


    were there year after year and I think we’re due a wee moan


    now and again.


    As regards negative comments, feck, get down here and if you


    can still dance at the end of the night, then you’re a Tim.


    H.H Mick

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