With 26 career goals, 25 of which came in a Dundee United shirt, £1.5m sounds a tad generous for Nadir Ciftci. Celtic’s earlier offer of £900k sounds more like the mark but Wigan have validated United’s target price with a deal with meets their requirements, if not that of the player’s.
Is he a player to improve Celtic? Quite possibly, he’ll bring something we don’t have at the moment – a sticky out ball – but it’s a big ask to expect him to step up to Champions League levels. Signing that level of player might take Champions League money, but we’ll need to get there first, which is why we need to bolster the attack quickish.
Two years ago we talked about the number of senior games a good player is able to make before he’s noticed by those to rich and lazy to do as much low-level research Celtic must do to unearth a gem.
Victor Wanyama made 51 appearances before becoming a Celtic player, Virgil van Dijk made 62. It’s likely both spent the bulk of those games without anyone paying much attention to them, Celtic’s scouts are likely to have been alerted when they have little more than a dozen or so games left at their previous clubs.
Ciftci’s made 67 senior appearances. If he has what it takes, the world will know about it sooner rather than later.