Celtic are keen to stamp on speculation for players this summer, including right-back Josip Juranovic. Josip has made no play for a move, he is the model professional, back from injury and ready for the new season.
You and I both know the reality is that even full-backs born into the Celtic family move when the right offer comes along. If, as reported by Sky, Atletico Madrid are interested in Josip, it would be naive to think he would not reciprocate. For Celtic, the question would be about money and backfill. Atletico paid Spurs £20m for right-back Kieran Trippier three years ago. A year earlier, they paid half that to PSV Eindhoven for right-back Santiago Arias.
Atletico are one of Europe’s most successful clubs, not one of their big spenders, so a Trippier-like fee for another right-back may be beyond them and an Arias-like fee would not meet the player’s value to Celtic.
I’m not convinced Atletico have the budget to spend on a right-back to make this happen, but I expect Celtic will be scouting right-backs across several continents right now. We are in for a long two months before the window closes. Remember, our business model depends on bringing players in, achieving success, selling them on at a significant profit and reinvesting. These dealings are part of that process.