Starfelt, value, heroic start. Qualifiers.


When rumours of Carl Starfelt going to Russia first surfaced last week few of us believed them.  Russia?  Not right now.  But we all had the debate, would you sell him?  He has been part of an incredibly successful Celtic central defensive partnership: won five from six trophies, never lost a domestic game in 90 minutes, plays on the left, the list goes on.

But you know the mantra, manage your assets or fail to manage your assets.  We should always be ready to trade a 28-year-old player who is second of two central defenders.  You and I have seen too often the consequences of failing to manage our assets.

We are now first and foremost a trading club.  Wish Carl all the very best at Celta Vigo and trade up.

Given this article of faith in how business should be done, the only remaining question is price.  Despite that glorious record in the last two years, Carl’s value ceiling has been set by performances when hundreds of scouts watched games he played in throughout his career.

Like Josip Juranovic in this sense, keeping the likes of Naymar in your pocket at the World Cup will not move the dial much.  We paid £1.5m two years ago for the player because Rubin Kazan had no other takers.  £5m today is very much his ceiling.

We hear lots about how difficult it is to settle into a new club, few had as difficult a challenge as Carl joining Celtic.  He signed during a 2021 lockdown but was not permitted to travel to Scotland until 31 July that year – the day Celtic were due to play their opening league game against Hearts at Tynecastle and Ange Postecoglou wanted him in the team.

To stay the right side of the law (we are Celtic, after all), on 30 July Carl and a driver sat at a service station south of the border until midnight.  The driver took a photo of Carl, with metadata confirming location and time, before travelling to Celtic’s hotel.

He arrived in the early hours, had some sleep before rising to meet his new teammates at breakfast.  On 31 July he travelled from Southwaite, met dozens of new faces, a new manager, new tactics, all in a new country.  He played 90 minutes and offered no excuses for his rustiness, just got on with the job.  Quite heroic.

Tonight it’s the turn of Hibs and Hearts to try to contribute some Uefa coefficient points to the Scottish clubs’ cause in the Uefa Conference League.

Hearts are in Trondheim to face Rosenborg.  The Norwegians are 18 games into their league season so will be miles sharper than Hearts, but this is not the Rosenborg we remember.  They are eight in the table; memories of 13 titles in a row and regular Champions League football are a fading memory.

Hearts are capable of progressing to the playoff round, where they would face either Hajduk Split or PAOK.  They can be hopeful.

Hibs are home to Luzern tonight, who finished fourth in Switzerland last term.  Swiss football is now a toy thing for Young Boys, so this tie is certainly winnable, but Hibs will surely Hibs it, denying Aston Villa a trip to the Festival later this month.

The additional Champions League monies we talked about yesterday looked in jeopardy 20 minutes into a scintillating performance by Newco last night.  Around that time, the scintillating part ended as a dour Servette settled in for the night.

Having sat through the whole game, I feel a bit foolish for putting our league title chances as low as 67% on Friday.  Newco have a lead to take to Switzerland on Tuesday, there remains every chance they will progress against a team that did not create a single chance in the first leg and will need to score at least once to stay in the competition.  But goodness, the early signs from across the city are heartening.

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  1. Good luck to our love struck Romeo…



    All the best Carl…



    SFtBs @ 11:36am,



    Well, what you said is below, it could be suggested you are the only one promoting the soap opera fluff.



    “Since my last time at Celtic, I have learned to……… “.



    be more grateful that someone is willing to employ me.



    less inclined to moan about having too many wingers



    find someone other than Peter Lawwell to act as my scapegoat- look out Michael!



    Brendan Rodgers never used Peter Lawwell as a scapegoat.



    If I’m wrong, knowing your quest for truth and integrity you will furnish us with the requisite quotes.



    Hail Hail

  2. 67 European Cup Winners on

    Carl thank you and good luck



    I didn’t watch the Huns game last night but was not surprised at the result


    I watch the game v Kilmarnock and thought they were very poor but I put that down to the surface


    Maybe they are just poor


    Early days let’s not get too excited until we have played them at Ipox



    BTW we have a game on our hands on Sunday the Dandy Dons will be pumped




  3. bournesouprecipe on

    Bada Bing



    Ta – Good linkage to Brendan.



    Very refreshing to hear the man in control speaking, still feel lucky to have gotten his expertise for a second era, and never thought it possible after his untimely exit. He seems very relaxed since he came back, ‘having learned to work in tandem with the recruitment team’? and not personalise matters over players. In total charge of a recruitment team that exists at every major club and not just Celtic, is key to the ‘economics’ that make footballers ever expanding fantasy livelihood. Nice job if you can get it, no year out for this millionaire with no inbuilt Protestant work ethic.



    I think the final three weeks of the transfer window which he’s handled brilliantly so far, will see a very busy Parkhead revolving door, now that he’s fully assessed Ange Postecoglu’s fine rebuild. The first thing he mentioned about transfers on his return, was “ we have a budget here “. AP worked within it,


    and so must Brendan.



    He also headed off at the pass, the barstool bloggers and terracing Tams that demand a daisy chain of unknown ‘pure quality’. The £15M -£20M signings turning up at Lennoxtown prepared to smite Ross County et all for a living, hasn’t so far, and won’t happen soon. When a Celtic player asks for a move we’ve learned their needs go beyond and exist outside in a world where Celtic are just an employer, they might understand the cause, but can’t live by it.



    The transfer market niche we’re in at present, is several levels above Jean Luc Bosman, its where we are, and it shows. All prices go up but solid economics and a robust business model structure started by Fergus McCann Ange and Brendan have all withstood yesterday’s Celtic Starfelt’s.

  4. Carl was tailor-made for dealing with Sevco crosses into our box. I hope our new bhoys are equally as good, because we currently have a keeper who seems to think he needs a travel permit to step off his line.



    Best of luck, Carl. Thanks for two very successful years.

  5. Did we really only pay 1.5 mn for Carl?



    Did we really get 5mn for Carl?



    Free money again.



    We now have 45-50mn in transfer fees in this year, depending which way you slice and dice it…



    That’s 30mn up on the deal (re players bought), add that to the 60mn in the bank and UCL money and we are ready for a three week splurge…






    Hail Hail

  6. PeterLatchfordsBelly on

    Yeah, I don’t get some of the teeth gnashing about Starfelt. An absolute no brainer given his age. A terrific servant for us, with consistently excellent timing in the tackle, but bringing in a younger, able replacement for profit makes sense.



    Didn’t watch Sevco but by all accounts they were dire. A collection of cart horses up front.

  7. So we sold Ajer for £13 million and bought Carl for £1.5 million ?



    The model looks like the same one which seen us sell KT for £25 million and sign Boli for £3 million.



    Great when it works as in the case of Carl. Not so much when you buy a dud on the cheap for player you sold at top price.

  8. Back to Basics - Glass Half Full on

    Paul …



    Your segment on Carl Starfelt is terrific.






    Includes information I was totally unaware of.



    Agree with your assertion he just got on with it.



    That extended to playing


    – with slight injuries


    – on the wrong side


    – in an expansive set up which routinely left him one on one against big guys, quick guys, skilful guys, all sorts.



    Never complained.



    Never sulked or went insecure.



    Never let his ego get in the way.



    Got on with the job.



    In that regard he was a proper professional athlete and a credit to our team.



    Good luck Carl.



    Shame about the sale price though.

  9. Back to Basics - Glass Half Full on

    BTW – if Paul’s info on purchase and sale prices is accurate?



    Great business.



    We got two years service from Carl for a net maximum cost of £0.



    Just like did with Josip.



    To points made earlier by others – if only they was all like that !!!




  10. I’m with Bada @ 1234 on the Starfelt fee.



    Good luck Carl – hope Nawrocki lives up to his potential.



    Yeah, I don’t get some of the teeth gnashing about Starfelt. An absolute no brainer given his age. A terrific servant for us, with consistently excellent timing in the tackle, but bringing in a younger, able replacement for profit makes sense.



    I don’t get it either PLB,his start here coincided with Ange start and there were trolls on here,ably assisted by the winj brigade who were suggesting at that time we would have difficulty getting a top6 finish,the trolltramps have gone,winjin remains.


    .Good luck Carl you wore the hoops



  12. Yes, the official figure for Starfelt was 4.3 mn, seems a bit random for everyone to make it up when it was around 3 mn less



    Hail Hail

  13. BIG WAVY on 10TH AUGUST 2023 12:44 PM



    We made no money on Carl Starfelt.



    Driven by him. Driven by love……..







  14. Doesn’t appear to be the quotes price for him when we bought. Who knows what is true.



    Personally feel like we’ve done him a favour in selling at a lower rate than we might have got selling to another club because it’s as close as he could possibly be to his burd.



    Nawrocki looks like an able replacement and it looks like we have one lined up so fair enough. But I wouldn’t put this down to great value and gelling in time for the CL will be tough.

  15. Why on earth would you WANT to trade a 28 year old defender who is a first choice player? Top coaches believe the best central defenders are those around 30 years of age or older. The only reason Carl was traded was because he wanted to be nearer to his girlfriend. Fair enough and good luck to him.

  16. Good luck to Big Carlos , I’m sure wee Greg will miss that fizzed ball played out wide , big fella was good at defending the box , played well in most big games.



    The number of times the big fella got on the end of one of our corners to see it bounce off his napper off target …. still I’m sure the new fella will be able to carry the ball out of the back more effectively than big Carlos , onwards and upwards.



    Better still if both centre backs can play the ball out and move into midfield, stops the like of Huns man marking Callum to stifle our build up




  17. Arrived as a €5m buy from Rubin Kazan. (2021)


    Left for €5m to Celta Vigo. (2023)







  18. Paul67 et al



    Was that the same Neymar who put Brazil in the lead in extra time against Croatia in the 2022 World Cup Quarter Finals?


    Or was it the other one?




    Genuine question, are you a Celtic fan, and I mean the football team itself?

  20. Chairbhoy



    Very few players or managers or politicians make direct attacks on people today- well, at least, people whom they may have to rely on in future for employment.



    So- no BR never made a public direct criticism of PL. And PL never made a direct public criticism of BR. And DD never made a direct public criticism of either of them.






    Every one who sided with Brendan on his leaving was sure that it was PL who was at fault. Where did that certainty come from except from BR’s dog- whistling talents. He said the McGinn deal was “Terminado” when, after he had talked to John McGinn and failed to persuade him to give up hisrich contract at Aston Villa. Rather than take responsibility for his failure to persuade McGinn – he said the deal was too far down the road- throwing PL’s failed efforts to land McGinn as the true failure- not his. You must remember this as you and all the other BR fanbhoys were on his side and sure it was PL as villain (and he had the track record because of the 5 Way Agreement and having a recquisitioner thrown out the doors of CP- which was shamefull behaviour).



    He dog-whistled again when Shved arrived with the “too many wingers” comment. Nobody, not even you, saw that as anything other than an accusation against PL. So why now ask me to evidence direct attacks now when you were so sure these comments were attacks on PL? Are you now doubting yourself?



    And while you’re answering that- can you address the original points.





    1) It is possible to be critical of BR when he deserves it and PL when he deserves it. Always believing in one over the other is not great evidence of critical judgement.



    2) Brendan is currently happy with an abundance of wingers similar to what he had criticised before ( Actually I know the answer to that but I’m keen to hear yours)



    3) While BR was avoiding direct criticisms of our staff, he was always planning to leave. And he did.



    4) How long do you think he will be with us this time?

  21. !!BADA BING!! on 10TH AUGUST 2023 12:34 PM


    Pretty sure at the time, the fee for Starfelt was £4-4.5 million …





    That was my impression too. £1.5m is news to me.

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