Ntcham signing and market change


Olivier Ntcham, 21, yesterday became the third most expensive signing in Celtic history, the initial payment was slightly north of the £4.5m quoted, and there are add-ons which are likely to take the total price above that which was paid for Chris Sutton and John Hartson.

The most striking element of the deal is that the player has played only 39 games in senior football. Compare this to van Dijk and Wanyama, who had played over 60 games before coming to Celtic, and you get an idea of how the transfer market has changed in a few years.

60 games is now too late. You need to be on the ground watching and ready to move inside 40 games. More than this and top talent will likely already be competitively priced out of reach.

A consequence of this trend will be an increase in one element of the transfer risk: any scout would prefer to see more than 39 senior games before making a recommendation. But this risk is mitigated by the fact that waiting on a player to increase in value, only introduces the risks associated with paying a higher price.

Then there is the risk of doing nothing at all………

What we do know is that everyone at Celtic, the management, scouts and board, are happy to have secured Olivier’s signature.

Welcome to Celtic, Olivier.

You know when the PSNI say, “The only way you can have the game in Belfast that week is if it’s on Friday and there are no away supporters”. Then Linfield insist on having the home game first due to TV money. Then someone else at the PSNI says they did not block Celtic fans from attending?

Well, that just happened.

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  1. It’s a bit of a gamble but you cannot be shabby if you’ve played all the way through the French youth team at every age.

  2. The Green Man says SACK THE Board on

    Well done on the transfers.


    Now lets see some action on the cheating, that would be good.





  3. Delaneys Dunky on




    Brian Mac was a member of Lisbon Lions CSC, along with Dallas, Frantic and myself. Still see him in Sauchiehall St WH Smith. Good guy.

  4. Delaneys Dunky on




    I used to work part time in Curlers Bar in the ’80s. Wild West in there most nights.

  5. Would the PSNI be trying to blame Celtic for Linfield not making the money they expected? This game should have been played on either the 11th or 12th as per the UEFA schedule, neutral venue if necessary. I suppose they would rather Police bonfires and announce how its been a great 12th. Hope Celtic arrive as late as possible leave the engines running and have a post match shower in Glasgow

  6. DD…………..if you worked in Curlers mid to late 80’s …….



    You have almost certainly insisted that I leave your howff.




  7. The Green Man says SACK THE Board on




    I was over in Tennant’s at that time.


    My old ma was in charge, i used to run the lounge downstairs when i was there.


    Crazy days:)




  8. cathedral view on




    I know it’s going over old ground but if PSNI refused permission to play the game in Belfast on the allotted dates then it should have been moved out of the city to a venue where it could be staged.



    This is normal practice. What’s not normal practice is moving the fixture to a Friday at 5pm and banning traveling support. It gives the impression that we are in some way part of the problem.



    Maybe Derry could have offered to host the match.

  9. Paul, I don’t think the number of appearances is particularly relevant in this case. Ntcham comes from the prestigious Le Harve academy and has spent 3 years at Man City and 2 years in Serie A. He has more pedigree than VVD and Wanyama. He probably wouldn’t be here if Brendan wasn’t here too. It’s true though that the market has changed in the last 5 years, previously it was buy for £1/2 million and sell for £10m. Now it’s buy for £3/4/5m and hopefully sell for £20m plus. This risk is high but not necessarily higher if you think about it. For example if Ntcham flops someone will still take him because of his background, maybe not for what we paid but we would get something back. On the other hand as we have seen with GMS, Boerrigter, Ciftci and others, if they flop we’re stuck with them as nobody else will pay them what we do.

  10. Delaneys Dunky on




    A few of my cousins were Turnbull High pupils.


    My aunt taught there for years, Mrs Dodds.


    I went to Saint Thomas Aquinas with a few of Brian’s cousins. All good fitba players as were their fathers.

  11. Great signing I believe but certainly not a number 10. He will hopefully be the engine room in our midfield for years to come.



    I would say though that Genoa had an option to buy for half the price you’ve quoted us paying, I don’t know the circumstances of why they didn’t but that is worth noting.



    Talking of losing players by not gambling. The biggest mistake I believe we’ve made in a decade is not adding an extra million to the offer for Henry Onyekuru last year. Believe he will be a world class player and will go for tens of millions in a couple of years time.

  12. Mid 80’s…….



    Byres rd, come out the underground station and make a left, about 50 – 100 yards down, there was a big bar with a lounge upstairs – open to the bar down stairs……anyone remember the name?

  13. Looking at Olivier he reminds me of Michael Essien, I hope he is as good, welcome Olivier.

  14. thetimreaper on

    MALONE BHOY on 13TH JULY 2017 12:55 PM



    I would say though that Genoa had an option to buy for half the price you’ve quoted us paying, I don’t know the circumstances of why they didn’t but that is worth noting.





    Man City gave him a 5 year deal then loaned him for 2 years. There is absolutely no chance that Genoa had an option for buy for £2m. That would make no sense whatsoever.

  15. Delaneys Dunky on




    Met many eccentric characters in the auld Curlers. Famous gangsters, artists, writers, luvvies and students would mix. An education for me as a student.

  16. The Green Man says SACK THE Board on




    90’s Bistro type pub?


    Indian restaurant now.




  17. DD, Gary67



    Naw. Not in the Lane, along the road from Curlers on the left handside of Byres rd. Big dome shaped entrance???

  18. Delaneys Dunky on




    I remember your mum well.


    Never made the connection before now.


    Small world indeed.

  19. The Green Man says SACK THE Board on




    You will know my ma:)


    No messing about wi that wee woman:)


    Hauled many a body oot the door:)


    Me…I used a big sweeping brush as a deterrent:)


    Worked lovely.




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