Selling reserves at a premium


Stephen Welsh’s breakthrough season at Celtic came in 2020-21 as defence and goalkeeper position fragmented.  He started in several of Ange Postecoglou’s first line-ups and was trusted to partner Carl Starfelt for a trip to Ibrox but a costly mistake at Livingston saw him drop down the pecking order.

At 23, he is just seven months older than Alexandro Bernabei, still considered young with room for development, but it is unlikely to happen at Celtic.  He has not made an appearance since October, though made it onto the bench five times in the closing months of the season.

It is no surprise there is interest in the player from Italy, where several of his peer group have excelled, but quoted the £3m price spot is noteworthy.  This is not far from the price we paid for Alistair Johnston, fresh from the World Cup and already a stalwart in the Celtic defence.

It remains to be seen what happens to Stephen.  If we are able to sell a player on the very fringe of the squad for a fee like this, it is a clear indication that the value attributed to a player simply by being at Celtic has increased.  We have seen this phenomenon at top English clubs for years.  They acquire huge squads, mostly loaned out for a healthy fee, before being sold at a premium as, for example, a Chelsea player.

It would also not escape your attention that if we sell reserves for £3m, maybe we can aim a little higher when signing first team players.

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  1. Stephen looked decent in SPFL but was lacking the extra quality needed to be a stand out alongside CCV.


    Aberdeen or Hibs should be in for him.

  2. Prestonpans bhoys on

    Hope someone mention to Stephen that he’s being punted and not heard it here first !

  3. I’m not sure where this would leave us with home trained players for our CL quota, and it’s always good to have as many die-hard Tims in the squad, which he is. And if we go to a 3 at the back we’ll need plenty cbs, and specially if Brendan’s last year is anything to go by when we ended up with 6 or 7 who could play there.



    But 3m or anywhere near for a player who made one league appearance would be too good to turn down. Just keep Brendan we’ll clear of choosing his replacement!

  4. 26TH JUNE 2023 11:57 AM






    Slow death indeed buddy for the msm.i agree totally.but news management cross pollinate over to clicks for sites own and ran by the same msm so it has same impact as reading a paper.know what your clicking and more importantly the media org behind the click.




  5. Jenz went for over €8 million, so we possibly dropped a big ball in not taking our option in him. £3 million for Welsh looks a good buy.

  6. £3m for Welsh.



    Bite your hand off. Not good enough. Need a 4th CH, then make it a young B team one like Dane Murray or Bosun Lawal.



    No sentiment csc




  7. bournesouprecipe on

    By the time the window slams open, we all know that SMSM will have made up stuff about every star player, there will be nobody left if you buy into the media coverage. No idea what Celtic have to say to them that can resolve the generic bent that exists in Scotland, the current Celtic ban was surprising given most previous leaders down through history having meekly accepted worse than their unfolded Brendan Rodgers paranoia.



    How very dare Celtic reappoint such a big named well respected great for Scottish football coach, whilst they were still busy trying to bury Celtic’s latest forgotten by nobody in Timland treble.



    Sitting on money is way better than begging bowl pennies, ‘the biscuit tin’ analogy, they sure do not like up them, BR’s interview suggests he’ll change the squad, though might not fully admit it. Once,twice, but three times a legend men might see stars with pound sign eyes, we have a decade ahead of Sevco, and Hamdump ours rivals in partnership.



    Along with Tottenham’s cognisance of Celtic’s success, let’s hope any caught in the revolving Parkhead door also fetch fees that avoid us making mistakes with new incoming heroes.



    Not many pubs in Whiteinch.


    Get yourself along to Partick and into the Smiddy or the Dolphin

  9. Fiscal year end coming up.



    I recall somewhere forecasts of 112m in revenues, and 60m in the bank.

  10. Was probably a bit of poor asset management when his stock was higher a year ago by not selling and replacing him.



    As was Jullien.



    Jenz was a strange one.



    AJ can play in a back 3 I’d be fairly confident. Kobayashi might also be more confident as part of a 3 for the time being and it would allow him more freedom to play from the back.



    Higher quality needed in that position though for the CL and I’m sure we have a good list as, CCV and Starfelt are potential targets for clubs and I would like to think we’d be looking to strengthen anyway.

  11. CELTIC40ME @ 12:24 PM,



    Stephen Welsh is a good centre half, as he is a Coatbrig bhoy, I tend to be biased and hope he gets the BR treatment.



    Last time he was at Celtic Park, Brendan Rodgers has a file on every player, in that file every player had a personal development plan, he indicated last week he is going to do this with the current squad.



    My feeling is Stephen lacks a few things, one is obviously physicality – we know that often modern coaches can overcome this, we know that BR can greatly improve players.



    Having said that, if Celtic first team staff don’t think SW will make the grade then it’s only right he moves on and, as big wavy says, Dane Murray &/or Bosun Lawal gets their chance.



    Now, you state, you think that Brendan should stay clear of having a say on any CHs coming in, I’d disagree with this and say that Brendan must have the final choice on all incoming players.



    If you remember, you said that Christopher Julien was the best centre half we’ve had this century, apart from big Johan and VvD.



    I’m afraid that excludes you from having a say in our CH position;)



    Hail Hail

  12. bigrailroadblues on

    St Tams


    Furniture store on South Street with the small doll. Driving, so beer will have to wait. It’s a hard life. 😉

  13. bigrailroadblues on 26th June 2023 1:36 pm



    St Tams



    Furniture store on South Street with the small doll. Driving, so beer will have to wait. It’s a hard life. 😉






    You turning into a big jessie




  14. PCS,



    Surely you just run with smaller Euro squads and/or pad it out with young B players and academy. We never seem to hit this crisis point that everyone worries about in reality.



    Bit of a red herring.




  15. CHAIRBHOY on 26TH JUNE 2023 1:33 PM



    Just a little joke, he’s got a blind spot when it comes to CBs.



    I have no recollection of saying that, but I couldnt agree more, some rando on a blog should be nowhere near having a say in who we sign.

  16. Tom McLaughlin on

    The UEFA homegrown rule is greatly misunderstood.



    In European competition, Celtic must register 25 players in their A List prior to commencement of each round. Of that 25, 8 must have been trained in the Scottish Leagues for a minimum of 3 years between the ages of 15 and 21. A minimum of 4 of that 8 must have come through Celtic’s youth system. The 8 homegrown players can be of any nationality.



    This means Celtic can include Bain, Taylor, Forrest, McGregor, Walsh and Ralston in their homegrown list, leaving 2 more homegrown players to be included. 3 if Walsh leaves.



    Apart from the 8 homegrown players, Celtic can list 17 first-team squad players.



    Time to stop the panicking.

  17. Back to Basics - Glass Half Full on

    Interesting observation Tom McL re the composition of the 25 man squad for CL.



    Agree about not panicking – as you say this only gets fixed through having an effective youth system and intelligent domestic purchases



    I do see two risks though



    1. Intelligent domestic purchases. Prospects now being sold for serious money. Calvin Ramsey is the best recent example. We as fans need to accept there is opportunity and method in buying Scottish punts for £2m.



    BTW – the above makes a mockery of “bite their hand off” suggestions about Welsh’s value. As we fill our squad with players in the £5-10m bracket, £3m is a fair price for a Celtic fringe player … which makes them IMMEDIATELY unaffordable to Scottish clubs except loans.



    2. Pathway through the youth system. Tom named players or types who fit that criteria.



    In my head they fit into four categories currently



    1st team regulars – Calum and Greg (2)


    Can do a job – James, Anthony (2)


    On the fringes – Scott, Stephen (2)


    Making up numbers – e.g. Bosun, Ben (2).



    Big squads needed as football becomes more intense?



    Four players unavailable for a match (minor injury, longer term injury, suspension) is now common.



    If 4 of remaining 17 are unavailable and only 2 of 8 Scots are perceived as first team regulars?



    We go into European games with only 15 (13+2) “dependable” types.



    For games of this intensity – with often 125km covered and urgent tactical changes often required?



    IMHO …. 15 is not enough

  18. CELTIC40ME @ 3:02 PM,



    Yes, only joking, I think we are all entitled to our opinion. Brendan Rodgers is on record as saying…



    “…it’s about offensive, aggressive, attacking football.



    What I am coming into is a team that’s playing that way. We’ll just look at adapting that and making changes.



    ‘In terms of recruitment, I am the one that knows how I want the team to play and I have to be involved in those discussions.



    Hopefully we can stay well away from the blame culture and have a similar system as we did under Ange.



    Hail Hail

  19. Back to Basics - Glass Half Full on

    Should have said above – perhaps credit due to UEFA.



    If the process is designed to encourage youth development and put at a disadvantage teams that don’t do this?



    It’s doing its job to some degree.

  20. CHAIRBHOY on 26TH JUNE 2023 4:10 PM



    Excellent. I think that would be good for the blog

  21. I don’t really understand why anyone would pair the name of Dane Murray with Bosun Lawal as a prospective call up to the first team squad. Bosun played 17 B team league games and over 1700 hours of football in 2022/23 on top of previous games with Celtic and Watford plus under age international football. He is very short on serious competitive football but has, perhaps, earned his shot to see if he can kick on.



    However, Dane Murray, missed a whole year of his development due to Covid and the league being cancelled. He has now played in only 2 B team gams last season because of injury and lasted less then an hour in total, If Dane can get fit and get games under his belt he might join the candidates but at the moment, other guys have been learning how to play defence and Dane has not yet got any training in his legs at all.



    There are other raw young boys in our under age squads well ahead of Dane Murray in consideration e.g. Matthew Anderson, Ben McPherson or even Daniel Kelly



    I don’t really understand why anyone would pair the name of Dane Murray with Bosun Lawal as a prospective call up to the first team squad





    Well that’s me telt……



    Feel like your about to issue me with detention.



    My point was that we would need to suffer a bit of bad luck to reach that end of the squad at CH (CCV, Starfelt, Kobyashi, Iwata), without losing sleep over the homegrown malarkey.




  23. Big Wavy



    You’re only 1 in a long line.



    Dane Murray, despite his lack of development time, played well in one of Ange’s pre-season games. One of those where Ange was chucking every warm body into the team. No doubt, Ange would have noted this and looked to re-involve him when he had some caching and game time under his belt. But he has had no such game time and has been passed by many others on the development ladder.



    If we needed one of those from the time of warm bodies, then Osage Urogohide is much closer to readiness but I wouldn’t want to bet that he’s gonna make it either.



    We are very short of CB cover if either CCV or Starboard get injured or want away. Kobayashi is tidy but too meek and mild for SPFL and Iwata is only covering adequately at the expense of getting time as a midfielder, and is probably too short for a long term run there.



    I’d like to see 2 new CBs this season

  24. Back to Basics - Glass Half Full on

    “Jeremie Frimpong might make us millions”



    Chickens / hatch / count / before / don’t.



    Would love it if it comes true of course …



    … but we’ve done this sketch already with Moussa Dembele.

  25. I wouldn’t write off Stephen Welsh just yet, Last season was interrupted by injury and I still think that he could be a reasonable defensive cover on the bench. If some club put in an acceptable offer then I would leave it up to the player as he may want regular 1st team football.


    I’ve still got my doubts about Koboyashi and his ability to deal with the physicality of Scottish Football. Hope he can prove me wrong.

  26. Back to Basics - Glass Half Full on

    Just a thought if Abada leaves …



    … alert : joins a couple of dots in different neighbourhoods



    Ajax appear to be going through one of their periodic cycles of selling a big swathe of their first team.



    If so, plenty of cash to offer us silly money a.k.a “a Basset”




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