BRENDAN RODGERS insists he will not be splashing out £15million or £20million signings as he prepares for life as Celtic manager second time-around.
The Irishman still holds the record as bringing in the Hoops’ most expensive purchase – the £9million for Odsonne Edouard from Paris Saint-Germain in June 2018 – but he won’t be breaking records this summer.
Rodgers has overseen five signings in the pre-season while spending something in the region of £11.5million.
Norwegian midfielder Odin Thiago Holm, Australian winger Marco Tilio and South Korean duo Kwon Hyeon-kyu and Yang Hyun-jun would almost certainly have been on their way through chief of recruitment Mark Lawwell’s network before th ex-gaffer was confirmed as Ange Postecoglou’s successor last month.
HOOP HOOP HOORAY…new Bhoy Maik Nawrocki proudly holds his Celtic top.
Rodgers, though, would have had prior knowledge of Polish defender Maik Nawrocki after watching the centre-back in action for Legia Warsaw against Leicester City in the Europa League in 2021 when the Midlands club won 3-1 at home and lost 1-0 away.
The Hoops chief anticipates bringing in further additions to bolster his squad, but has shut down all talk of a marquee signing.
Rodgers said: “I think everyone looks and thinks that we might be bringing in a £15m-£20million player. Now the reality is that that won’t be the case.
“It’s not what the club is based on, but that doesn’t mean there are not talented players out there that we want.
“There’s still quite a way to go in the window. So, we’ll look to improve the squad again and continue with that.
“We’ve done a lot of early business, which has been great and now allows the players to come in and settle and, of course, we want to do so more, but I’m quite calm in that.”
Rodgers, speaking to Sky Sports, continued: “I know where the club is at, I know the model that’s in place and we hope that we can maximise that and then develop the players on the field.
“As a modern manager in the modern game, it’s very, very difficult to do what you did years ago and be out watching players every night of the week.
EYES FRONT…Brendan Rodgers focuses on the action at the Aviva Stadium at the weekend.
“The game has changed, so you’re really relying on your recruitment team and you see here the players that have come in. You won’t get absolutely everyone right and that’s based purely on the basis of players sometimes maybe not adapting to a country that they come into, but there’s a lot of great work.
“It’s a really comprehensive structure that’s in place here to try and mitigate as many of those circumstances as they can and then allow the player to come in and really flourish in an environment which is made for development.”
Rodgers won seven successive domestic honours in his previous stint and he added: “Rangers are investing and will want to be strong and the other teams will be investing, as well, and looking to you to keep closing the gaps.
“But my focus is primarily on Celtic and making us the very best that we can be, developing the players and looking to get a performance level as consistently as we can.
“It will be the same coming in this time. It’s a challenge, of course, but Celtic’s about winning and it’s about winning style.”
Next up for Rangers and his players is tomorrow night’s James Forrest Testimonial Match in which Spanish aces Atheltic Bilbao will provide the opposition.
And then the action kicks in at the same venue when the Premiership starts with a visit from Ross County as the club’s eleventh league flag in 12 years will be unfolded in a sold-out stadium.
💚 Tomorrow night, we return to Paradise to celebrate #CelticFC Legend James Forrest!
— Celtic Football Club (@CelticFC) July 31, 2023