Few in the world match Celtic’s transfer success


They call it Helicopter Money. Income that just lands in your lap without you having to do any work for it. It brings a special kind of joy. The millions Celtic will earn as a result of a sell-on clause from Virgil van Dijk’s £75m sale to Liverpool is a classic of the genre.

Right off, let’s acknowledge a few facts. Virgil’s £2.6m capture from Groningen was a brilliant piece of business by the club. Many are due credit for this, including Neil Lennon and Peter Lawwell, but the occasionally-maligned John Park, in particular, deserves applause.

Park lost his Midas touch after the January 2012 capture of Mikael Lustig, but that had as much to do with the change in comparative finances between Celtic and the bottom of the English Premier League, than any degradation of our former chief scout’s ability.

Virgil had played only 62 games in senior football when he signed for Celtic. We got him because we moved, showing incredible agility, before anyone else had the opportunity to act. We will not be able to exactly recreate the Virgil business – others see where and how exceptional value has been earned and copy, but this has always been the case.

What we can say for sure is that few clubs anywhere in the world have the success rate of Celtic at finding under-priced footballers and transforming them into Champions League players who are sold at multiples of five or ten times value.


Paul John Dykes and Kevin Graham are joined by Celtic authors, Stephen Sullivan and Stevie Murray for a special festive episode – Christmas Jumpers for Goal-Posts.

Stephen Sullivan is a former Celtic View reporter who wrote the much-lauded Sean Fallon biography, ‘Iron Man’. He is now the editor of FIFA.com.

Stevie Murray has now written two books on Celtic – ‘Ten Men Won The League’ and ‘Kenny of the Celtic’ – and he is a respected and authoritative voice on the club.

Treat yourself to a signed copy of Jim Craig – Right Back to 67 and you will receive a copy of That Season on Paradise signed by Bertie Auld, just order the Jim Craig book at CQNbookstore.co.uk and we’ll do the rest…


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  1. 9.37 Million Windfall, the CQN article says of Virgil’s transfer.



    But the exposition of the figure is not given – there’s an error and the sentenc ebreaks down just before the pic of VVD with his Liverpool top.



    Anyone know how the 9.37 figure was reached?



    I’d like the detailed fiscal breakdown as I’m due to encounter a few Huns in the coming days and want to induce that chilling nausea in their guts and wrap my cold clammy hand of bitter truth around their black hearts with smug, calculated precision.

  2. So we got more for a sell on, than we did for Wanyama? Just shows you we were mugged in the first place, you are buying the player, not the league he plays in.It was good to hear Brendan say last year, the days of EPL clubs taking players for a fraction of their true value , have gone.I do understand that fees have took a spike since we sold VVD, but we never got what he or Victor was worth.

  3. Almore,



    Celtic have been so ahead of the rest it is Frightening.



    Imagine Celtic minded people Governing the game in this Country?






    Good to hear DD is just down with the Flu – I couldnae move for 4 days with that nasty virus.

  4. Craig Gordon – superb Celtic keeper.



    Fantastic shot-stopper, magnificent strength of character to resurrect his career at Celtic, sieze the #1 jersey, lose it, win it back -and Brendan Rodgers’ favour – and perform at the very highest level, winning us classic CL points (e.g : see wonderful injury-time save v Mac City).



    Like every player who has suffered injury and the strains of time at the top, he will fade and slip, and due to his position those faults will be magnified. Eventually, when we have a worthy successor ready, his time will come.



    However, he’ll do for me until anyone can raise a better argument against him being the Celtic goalkeeper than, “He once looked too enthusiastic about coming up for a last-minute corner against us when playing for Hearts”.

  5. Hunderbirds are Gone on

    More money?


    We could spend more on transfers, or wages, but I think that strategy can never work in the SPFhell. Our league is just not attractive to quality players.


    We have had some recent success with the buy, develop, sell model, but in spite of the sentiment expressed in Paul’s article today, this model is speculative, and luck plays a large part on its success or failure. You only have to look at Ajax. Ten years ago, they were the club, that developed Europe’s (and beyond) finest young talent, were top of the pile in their domestic competition, and had some (relative) success in Europe. Now?


    No, our money should not be spent on personnel, it should be spent to improve our training facilities at Lennoxton, or elsewhere, and on our scouting network.


    Against Dundee the other night, when IMO, the team played as well as they have this season, we had Ajer, KT, CalMac, Jamesie and Mikey Johnston all on the pitch at the same time. All of these players, if you count Ajer, are products of our youth academy. What would it cost us in transfer fees, and scouting/agents fees, to procure five players of that calibre?


    Grow our own is the way forward. Invest in that.

  6. Almore- i’m not one for moaning about facilities at CP, but the toilets at ground level in the Main Stand are very poor.I thought the Kerrydale Bar scenario, would have been extended to other parts of the stadium.A temporary marquee, or gazebo ;))’ could be erected on matchdays, so guys have somewhere to take the kids ,pre and post match.Not having a free hit at anyone here, maybe the club have looked at similar ways of enhancing match day experience.A cafe on the other hand……HH

  7. TEUCHTER ÁR LÁ on 28TH DECEMBER 2017 12:53 PM







    Aye mate got it.





    Usain Bolt?…..I thought J going after the taxi was more like a lioness spotting a wildebeest.





    In fact the Lisbon Lioness would make a good moniker :-)




    J will enjoy that when I tell her :))))




  8. mike in toronto on

    Good signing for Aberdeen …. should ensure that the zombies finish no higher than 3rd (if that)…..



    re: transfer success …. Celtic are certainly improving in that regard … Virgil, Wanayama, Forster have all moved on for a decent profit …



    but, we (along with everyone else) still have some way to go to match the Portugese …. between 2005 and 2015, Benfica made a profit of $458 million buying and selling players, while Porto made $652 million!



    Obviously, Portugese teams benefit from the link to Brazil ( a lot of the players are south american, even if they are signed through other clubs before ending up at Porto) ….



    so, got me wondering …. which country (preferably somewhere warm and sunny) could scotland take over, so that Celtic could nationalize their players?



    It would have to be someplace warm (or else, why bother?), and not too big ….



    Recently, a study was done which measured national footballing success based on size of population … Montenegro was tops, followed by Cape Verde, and Uruguay … Jamaica was no. 7 ….



    Anyone think we could take any of those countries?

  9. The Trust do good, speaking up for the ordinary Celtic Supporters,all this transfer cash will help to build The Hotel and the Superstore,etc,

  10. Celticrollercoaster supporting @WalkWithShay on

    ***GOALS GALORE 3- Just 2 days until we go live***



    Good afternoon fholks and thank you to the 64 entrants to register to take part in our competition. An incredible response, since we just launched on boxing day. If you have not received your registration email or first set of fixtures please drop us an email at cqnpredictor@gmail.com



    As it is Christmas, If we hit 67, one of the entrants will also get a free entry, so just 3 to go! Lets make it happen,



    “Goals Galore 3” commences this Saturday 30th December



    Simply pick a different team each week over the course of the next 10 chosen “fixtures weeks” and the entrant with the highest aggregate goals scored will take the top prize (roughly 90% of the total prizepot). To keep everyone fully involved, there will be a separate prize (about 10% of the total prize money) for the entrant who does best over the final 3 rounds. So even if you get off to a disappointing start, there’ll still be everything to play for as the weeks go on.



    The cost of entry is £10 per team entered and this gets you one free joker which, when played, will double your score that week. You can also buy one additional joker for £5.



    The prizepot will consist of 50% of the entry and joker fee, with 50% going to support BRTH Mary’s Meals funding to feed and educate schoolkids in LIberia,



    Thanks to an initiative from Mary’s Meals, donations made to the charity before 31st December will count double in value, hence our early start date.



    Really, really simple to take part and all you need to do for now is just register your interest by sending an email to cqnpredictor@gmail.com . If you have a moniker, nickname that we can use to identify you once the competition starts then please tell us that. We’ll get back to you with full details asap.



    Please feel free to tell your family and friends, share on Facebook, involve your work colleagues, etc. We are a competition Open to All.







  11. RON67 on 28TH DECEMBER 2017 2:27 PM



    goalkeeper Michel Vorm being linked with a jan move to us.



    *Sean Fallon was at a wee function in a chapel hall and got talking tae one of the priests there, he told him that we were looking for another goalie, when the father questioned him saying we had the Faither and John Fallon at the time his response was a top European side like Celtic should always have 3 good goalies.



    The Father who had previously been a curate at our Lady & St Marks told him about a lhad who had got married out of that church and was on loan tae Villa from Wolves and might be worth looking at.



    That goalie was Evan Williams, might not have been the best but was our star player in Milan 1970. If big Billy hadn’t punched the ball over his heid IMHO we would have beaten the dikepluggers in the replay.



    So mibbees St Brendan of the Antrim coast is thinking along these lines.

  12. ‘What we can say for sure is that few clubs anywhere in the world have the success rate of Celtic at finding under-priced footballers and transforming them into Champions League players who are sold at multiples of five or ten times value.’



    Let’s See,



    Stats from Celtic Wiki,



    Transfers – Players In



    Transfers | Transfers Out | A-Z of Players | First Team Squad


    Brendan Rodgers (May 2016 – present)



    33 Marvin Compper, £1m from Red Bull Leipzig, Dec 2018 [BBC]


    22 Odsonne Edouard, (loan) from Paris Saint-Germain, Aug 2017 [BBC]


    07 Patrick Roberts, (loan) from Manchester City, Aug 2017 [BBC]


    21 Olivier Ntcham, £4.5m from Manchester City, Jul 2017 [BBC]


    26 Kundai Benyu, undisclosed from Ipswich Town, Jun 2017 [BBC]


    15 Jonny Hayes, £1.3m plus Ryan Christie (loan) from Aberdeen, Jun 2017 [BBC]


    88 Kouassi Eboue, £2.8m from FC Krasnodar, Jan 2017 [BBC]


    12 Cristian Gamboa, £1m from West Bromwich Albion, Aug 2016 [BBC]


    24 Dorus de Vries, undisclosed from Nottingham Forest, Aug 2016 [BBC]


    11 Scott Sinclair, £3.5m from Aston Villa, Aug 2016 [BBC]


    02 Kolo Toure, free from Liverpool, Jul 2016 [BBC]


    10 Moussa Dembele, £500,000 from Fulham, Jun 2016 [BBC]



    Ronny Deila (Jun 2014 – May 2016)



    35 Kristoffer Ajer, undisclosed from IK Start, Feb 2016 [BBC]


    13 Colin Kazim-Richards, free from Feyenoord, Feb 2016 [BBC]


    27 Patrick Roberts, (loan) from Manchester City, Jan 2016 [BBC]


    28 Erik Sviatchenko, £1.5m from Midtjylland, Jan 2016 [BBC]


    24 Carlton Cole, unattached, Oct 2015 [BBC]


    05 Jozo Simunovic, £3m from Dinamo Zagreb, Aug 2015 [BBC]


    17 Ryan Christie, £500,000 from Inverness Caledonian Thistle, Aug 2015 [BBC]


    02 Tyler Blackett, (loan) from Manchester United, Aug 2015 [BBC]


    19 Scott Allan, £275,000 plus Liam Henderson(loan) from Hibernian, Aug 2015 [BBC]


    07 Nadir Ciftci, £1.5m from Dundee United, Jul 2015 [BBC]


    26 Logan Bailly, £250,000 from OH Leuven, Jul 2015 [BBC]


    22 Saidy Janko, undisclosed from Manchester United, Jul 2015 [BBC]


    20 Dedryck Boyata, £1.5m from Manchester City, Jun 2015 [BBC]


    29 Michael Duffy, undisclosed from Derry City, Feb 2015 [BBC]


    14 Stuart Armstrong, £1.75m from Dundee United, Feb 2015 [BBC]


    16 Gary Mackay-Steven, £250,000 from Dundee United, Feb 2015 [BBC]


    09 John Guidetti, (loan) from Manchester City, Sep 2014 [BBC]


    12 Stefan Scepovic, £2.3m from Sporting Gijon, Sep 2014 [BBC]


    32 Mubarak Wakaso, (loan) from Rubin Kazan, Aug 2014 [BBC]


    22 Jason Denayer, (loan) from Manchester City, Aug 2014 [BBC]


    27 Aleksander Tonev, (loan) from Aston Villa, Aug 2014 [BBC]


    16 Jo Inge Berget, (loan) from Cardiff City, Jul 2014 [BBC]


    26 Craig Gordon, free, Jul 2014 [BBC]



    Neil Lennon (June 2010 – May 2014)



    28 Leigh Griffiths, £1m from Wolverhampton Wanderers, Jan 2014 [BBC]


    25 Stefan Johansen, £2m from Stromsgodset, Jan 2014 [BBC]


    19 Holmbert Fridjonsson, £100,000 from Fram Reykjavik, Jan 2014 [BBC]


    20 Teemu Pukki, £3m from Schalke, Aug 2013 [BBC]


    06 Nir Biton, £700,000 from FC Ashdod, Aug 2013 [BBC]


    11 Derk Boerrigter, £3m from Ajax, Jul 2013 [BBC]


    22 Steven Mouyokolo, free from Wolverhampton Wanderers, Jul 2013 [BBC]


    05 Virgil van Dijk, £2.6m from FC Groningen, Jun 2013 [BBC]


    17 Amido Balde, £1.5m from Vitoria Guimaraes, Jun 2013 [BBC]


    26 Viktor Noring, (loan) from Trelleborgs FF, Jan 2013 [STV]


    05 Rami Gershon, (loan) from Standard Liege, Jan 2013 [BBC]


    18 Tom Rogic, £400,000 from Central Coast Mariners, Jan 2013[BBC]


    11 Lassad Nouioui, free from Deportivo La Coruna, Sep 2012 [BBC]


    26 Lubos Kamenar, (loan) from Nantes, Aug 2012 [BBC]


    04 Efe Ambrose,£1.5m from Ashdod, Aug 2012 [BBC]


    07 Nicolas ‘Miku’ Fedor, (loan) from Getafe, Aug 2012 [BBC]


    01 Fraser Forster,£2m from Newcastle United, Aug 2012 [BBC]


    17 Pawel Brozek, (loan) from Trabzonspor, Jan 2012 [BBC]


    40 Rabiu Ibrahim, free from PSV Eindhoven, Jan 2012[BBC]


    23 Mikael Lustig, free from Rosenborg, Jan 2012 [BBC]


    39 Andre Blackman, free from AFC Wimbledon, Nov 2011 [BBC]


    04 Badar El Kaddouri, (loan) from Dynamo Kiev, Aug 2011 [BBC]


    14 Mohamed Bangura, £2.2m from AIK, Aug 2011 [BBC]


    67 Victor Wanyama, £900,000 from Germinal Beerschot, Jul 2011 [BBC]


    02 Adam Matthews, free from Cardiff City, Jun 2011 [BBC]


    06 Kelvin Wilson, free from Nottingham Forest, Jun 2011 [BBC]


    46 Dylan McGeogh, free from Rangers, Jun 2011 [BBC]


    15 Kris Commons, £300,000 from Derby County, Jan 2011 [BBC]


    32 Tony Watt, £100,000 from Airdrie, Jan 2011 [BBC]


    07 Freddie Ljungberg, free from Chicago Fire, Dec 2010 [BBC]


    77 Olivier Kapo, free from Wigan Athletic, Nov 2010 [BBC]


    10 Anthony Stokes, £800,000 from Hibernian, Aug 2010 [BBC]


    26 Fraser Forster, (loan) from Newcastle United, Aug 2010 [BBC]


    03 Emilio Izaguirre, £580,000 from Motagua, Aug 2010 [BBC]


    05 Daniel Majstorovic, free from AEK Athens, Aug 2010 [BBC]


    33 Beram Kayal, undisclosed from Maccabi Haifa, Jul 2010 [BBC]


    88 Gary Hooper, £2.4m from Scunthorpe, Jul 2010 [BBC]


    04 Efrain Juarez, undisclosed from UNAM Pumas, Jul 2010 [BBC]


    27 Daryl Murphy, £1.5m from Sunderland, Jul 2010 [BBC]


    16 Joe Ledley, free from Cardiff City, Jul 2010 [BBC]


    11 Cha Du-Ri, free from SC Freiburg, Jul 2010 [BBC]


    21 Charlie Mulgrew, free from Aberdeen, Jul 2010 [BBC]




  13. !!BADA BING!! on 28TH DECEMBER 2017 2:42 PM






    *cauld, don’t make me laugh, its 27 below here and will be cauld right intae 2018. Erie Penn, a place I know well as I pass through it when driving south on vacation and only about 2 hours south of here has so far had 59cms of snow and its still coming down. That’s a winter for you. Thank God climate change is only a chinese hoax lol.

  14. SANDMAN on 28TH DECEMBER 2017 1:39 PM



    Couldn’t agree more regards Craig Gordon. It totally befuzzles me the criticism he gets. Ok his distribution isn’t PERFECT but id guarantee he makes more successful passes per game than most in the starting 11. VERY RARELY do we lose a goal or give a serious chance to the opposition off his distribution. If anyone can name me a goalkeeper who is better than Craig Gordon (that is within Celtic’s reach) i’m all ears (well technically eyes this is a blog after all)

  15. embramike says ” Yer team’s deid…Beat it!” on

    Live TV fixtures


    Tuesday 23rd January 19:45 Partick Thistle v Celtic BT Sport


    Saturday 3rd February 12:30 Kilmarnock v Celtic BT Sport


    Sun 25th February 13:30 Aberdeen v Celtic Sky

  16. Second centre half in January?



    Steven Caulker has left #QPR by mutual consent with immediate effect.



    We wish him well for the future. pic.twitter.com/VU6wlTdX2i



    — QPR FC (@QPRFC) December 28, 2017

  17. On Craig Gordon, his distribution seems to have deteriorated recently. It is poor and he is also very slow putting the ball back into play when I feel that he should be the initiator of at least 2 or 3 fast breaks during a game – not sure why BR doesn’t allow this.



    Watching bits of some EPL games, Edelson’s (I know, Man City) passing and long passing is superb and many of the goalies there put the ball back out quickly before the opposition has time to settle. CG is a good goalie, but could we do better ?

  18. Gordon is a good shoot stopper, and he has improving his passing but ffs, we live in a world where football is the number one sports, i am sure there are many very good goalkeepers about or yet to be discovered ps boruc and foster were fairly cheap and better than Gordon who i again would say is a good keeper, but no more than that. Its also woryh remembering he is 34 years old so its likely we will need to sort the positions out sooner or later




  19. Steve(dutch) Mclaren



    has left his post in Tel Aviv to pursue other options.



    Someone tell superscoreboard to raise hopes.





    ps He is favourite for Sheff Wednesday job who’s manager was


    sacked last week has been appointed Swansea manager.

  20. Hi Bhoys



    BBC at it already with their big bad Celtic fan stories.



    I’m not saying it didn’t happen but I don’t remember anything about batteries being thrown at Celtic players on their website.



    I’m pretty sure a battery would do more damage than a banana if it hit you.









    P.S. Hope our bhoys get their 5 a day on Satutday

  21. Celtic couldn’t afford to buy a manifestly better keep than Craig Gordon given prices for non entities start around £10M ( and remember Chelsea genuinely bid for him? )



    Dorus De Vries may or may not have ‘better feet’ only a small factor of being a keeper, and his efforts at ‘shot stopping’ saw Craig Gordon straight back in the side, in jig time.



    Doubt a keeper is high on the priority list for the reasons above, good keepers rarely have all the attributes needed and generally are as rare as the proverbial *hyte from a rocking horse.



    Joe Hart Englands finest for example CSC

  22. blantyretim is praying for the Knox family on

    A thread of history – some fascinating facts about Countess Markievicz, the first woman elected to the House of Commons, 99 years ago today.



    Tweet from Nicola Sturgeon today



    Irony bypass

  23. sixtaeseven - 67 trophies in my lifetime on

    Mark Walters … ???


    The latest to be trundled out by the SMSM to deflect and take the spotlight off of THEMs.



    Dear, dear… they are scraping the barrel now.



    Whenever you think they have reached the low, they go lower.



    Virgil van Dijk to Liverpool was indeed a hard one for them to take this week.