The success of the Carter Vickers deal, and the imminent arrival of Jota, have focussed attention on the practice of loaning players with an option to buy. This has turned out extremely well for us in this campaign.
There is no reason it can’t work in the future.
Celtic is not a rich club. We have resources, and plenty of them in comparison to other clubs in the game here. But we are not uber-wealthy; we have to cut our cloth to suit the circumstances in which we play.
We’ve spent a large sum on Carter Vickers. Jota will cost us another chunk of the budget. We will bring in quality aside from them … but we have to be careful not to overdo it. We must always have one eye on the budget.
The success of these deals makes it increasingly likely that at least one of our summer signings will be on similar terms.
A loan with an option to buy. We know the risks. The players are guaranteed to want to stay, and if there are other clubs sniffing around they might well choose to see what else is available.
All a right to buy does is give us an unrestricted first option.
But that is no small thing, as we’ve shown in these instances. That is no minor advantage when it comes with titles, trophies and Champions League football. Carter Vickers and Jota were not the only option-to-buy loan deals which have paid dividends in recent years; we had the same option in the deal for Edouard and it too went well.
The option to buy lets us do a proper evaluation of a player.
Had we done that with Ajeti or Barkas we wouldn’t be staring down a multi-million-pound loss on those guys; we could have terminated either of those deals at the end of the first campaign.
We will spend money in the next few weeks, that’s not even up for debate. But it’s not a coincidence that the two biggest deals we did – the two for £6 million – were deals done only after we knew what we were getting for the money.
I would not be in the least bit surprised if any marquee signing we made here was done on those same terms.
It just makes good sense.
In light of yesterday’s developments, wow well do you know your Scottish Football Governance Scandals? Take the quiz now! You’ll not be surprised how many of these feature Ibrox …