AS he prepares to welcome Norwich City striker Adam Idah as his second signing of this transfer window, Brendan Rodgers has spelled out key factors in any deal.
The Celtic boss insists there are essential qualities he looks for that are outwith the analytical data provided on a possible target.
Rodgers, who has already recruited £3million German winger Nicolas Kuhn from Rapid Vienna, said: “Listen, there will be certain clubs who will only look at that side of it.
IN WITH A SHOUT…Brendan Rodgers issues instructions from the touchline.
“But there are things that you can never find out through analysis other than by being at a stadium, watching the player and seeing what their movement is like, seeing how he deals the with atmosphere.
“I always say, the analytical side doesn’t tell you if someone has a heart and personality. When you play for a club like this one, you need to have a heart and the mental strength.
“You have to find out those things and see them live. Obviously, statistics will give you a lot, but I’m not driven by it. It’s something which is a really good support for us.”
Rodgers, with the assistance of Mark Lawwell and the recruitment team, has been scouring the worldwide market for suitable additions to his first-team squad as tonight’s 11.30pm deadline approaches.
IRISH AYES…striker Adam Idah is poised to join on loan.
Republic of Ireland international striker Idah is poised to sign a loan deal until the end of the season and all indications are that it will be a short-term contract for a left-back if the manager secures a reliable replacement for the crocked Greg Taylor who will miss the trips to Aberdeen on Saturday and Hibs in midweek.
The Scotland No.3 is also doubtful for the Scottish Cup fifth round tie against St Mirren in Paisley a week on Sunday.
Rodgers also admitted he likes to have a chat with any potential incomings before progessing a move.
The 51-year-old second time-around Hoops gaffer, speaking to the Daily Record, continued: “Yes, just to feel their own ambition. I think it’s very important.
“If players are coming to a club and the agent or the player don’t want to speak to the manager or don’t deem it as important, then that’s a red flag for me. But that’s very rarely been the case.
“For me, I’d always want to speak with a player and find a way to do that so you understand their ambitions and what it is they want to achieve as well as what we can give them.
“Because it is about mentality. You have to try and get as much understanding of that mentality as you can.
“Have I backed away from some? Yes. There’s probably some I wish I had done so with, as well! There are plenty who talk a good game.”
SCARF ACE…Nicolas Kuhn is in Paradise after his £3million switch from Rapid Vienna.
Rodgers added: “Ideally, you want to have players who you know are going to be here for a few seasons to grow and develop.
“However, there always has to be a balance between both loan players and permanent signings. Permanent signings aren’t always possible. Having had the experience here before there’s always going to be that revolving door.
“You’ll always have that core of players who you want to keep here, but if you look at the movement of squads here over two-to-three-year periods, that’s always going to happen. In the modern game, you have to be able to adapt to that.
“It’s not like the old days when you went: ‘Right, that’s the squad and we’ll keep them together for five or six years’.
“One, that doesn’t work anyway. You have to recycle your squad every three years. You have to. Even if it was a team that had won three trebles – on that fourth year you would want to change it because of the hunger.
“That’s what experience tells us. There will always be that and that’s okay. It’s just about getting good players in.”