It always stings a bit when we lose a good one, and there appears to be universal agreement that Victor Wanyama is a good one, but there are compensations. We lost him for the asking price (a club and Scottish record) and lost him early enough in the transfer window for the cash to be put to good use. Technical note, £12.5m and freeing up a very small wage will not provide £12.5m for transfers plus wages for either a £12.5m player or a collection of players at that value. It will free up a lesser transfer budget and provide a higher wage budget.
Victor goes with our best wishes. He joins a club who signed Celtic fringe player (I’m being generous), Jos Hooiveld, two years ago, and who also employ former Celtic misfit, Danny Fox. It’s not a sexy move but Victor will be as well compensated as Celtic by England’s bling. There could be claims about the move being about football, but it’s about the money, honey; not that there’s a problem with that, Victor didn’t pack his bags in Nairobi hoping to end his days in Glasgow.
He only became a first choice player after Beram Kayal was injured so comprehensively by Elbows McCulloch and played less than 30 games and was a first team choice for less than a year before declining a contract extension for a substantial wage increase (several times the wages he was on). This, when he had almost three years left on his existing deal. There’s a lesson there for future negotiations.
If you are feeling less than happy about this development, I could suggest a reason or two. Back in the 70s and 80s Macari, Hay, Dalglish, Nicholas and McClair were sold for competitive fees but the Cavalry of reinforcements didn’t arrive. Instead Celtic hoped a new generation of youths would fill the gap. Those of us from that generation were condition by the experience.
Things worked differently when Jock Brown was in charge (aye, you read right). Within a few months we lost the league for the ninth consecutive season and sold the Three Amigos for a substantial amount of money. In August 1997 I was distraught but 10 months later the penny dropped. The challenge now for Peter Lawwell, Neil Lennon and the Celtic scouts is to outperform Jock and Wim………….
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