Well, it didn’t take them long did it?
The Evening Times is off and running tonight with the first “Celtic snubbed” story of the window. How good it must feel to be the first paper to write those words. I bet Jackson and others are raging that they have been beaten to the punch on this one.
What’s the truth? As someone pointed out this morning, even as he was saying goodbye to Birmingham fans the player was telling the press that “England is where you want to play.” It would have been a matter of time before he was hankering to go back.
The deal for this guy is dead. Celtic has walked away from the table.
We’ve offered what we thought he was worth.
If this is a “snub” to us, then it’s one very like the Novo one he bangs on about so much and which exists only in his own mind.
The player will get more money from Middlesbrough and so will his club; both are absolutely entitled to take the cash. The club will never have to explain it. At some point, I strongly suspect that the player himself will sorely regret the choice he has made.
There is “playing in England” and there is “Playing In England.” A mid-table battle in the second tier is the former, not the latter. It may well be that he doesn’t care. In that case it’s all about money, and we know all that we need to know.
The press loves this. This is their first anti-Celtic story in a while, and they will lap it up. We cannot let any of that nonsense distract us. The manager will move forward and pursue Plan B. When he speaks to the press about this expect him to emphasise that he only wants people here who are committed, fully committed, to the cause.
Everything else is window dressing.
Is it disappointing when transfer deals don’t go through? Of course it is. But we’re making moves. We’re trying to bring players in. That’s the crucial thing here. That’s what we should focus on. The cash is there, the manager is free to spend it.
So now we’ll find out who else the club has had its eye on.
Sooner or later, the hacks who are sniggering today will have to cover the next big Celtic signing of the window.