Since the story about our “interest” in Fausto Vera broke, I have been waiting on two things; a confirmed bid from Celtic, or someone at Celtic confirming that we were ready to make one. None of these things has happened.
The Vera story remains something that our media got from somewhere else, and ran as truth although there was nothing in it to suggest that it was. They are now writing stories about what a blow to us it is that the player is linked with a move elsewhere.
Here’s what none of them acknowledges; the likelihood of us moving for him was always low. We may have scouted him, and we may have liked what he saw, but a £6 million plus transfer fee for a young guy yet to really make his name, and from half a world away, can only be regarded as a gigantic risk which I never believed we would take.
When Ange bought four players from Japan, that was not a risk. He knew those guys. Our left back from Argentina cost us half of what Vera would have, and he’s acknowledged to be a little raw yet. The move may or may not work out; Ange and the analytics department will know what they are doing. But £6 million is a lot to take on a punt.
And it’s a lot to spend on a punt in a crucial area where we can’t afford to get it wrong.
The Vicinius deal, I thought was at least realistic because he’s been mixing it up in Europe and the City Group influence made it less chancy. This would be too big a gamble. Just because we’re casting our net wider than ever, it doesn’t mean we’ll do something daft.
The player we sign for this role will most probably have European experience.
He will be tested and battle hardened. It is not the sort of position where you want to sign a project. If we were to spend that kind of money, we’d want to know we had the real deal.
This story emerged from our signing Bernabei. Suddenly, we’re going to be linked to every player in South America who is looking for a club, but not one of the reports on this story even claims that we’ve made a formal move for Vera.
So ignore all talk that we’re set to “lose the battle” or fall short in the race.
You can’t lose a race you never entered, and although this guy might have been on a list of options that £6 million asking price was always a little over the top for an unproven player … and certainly not when he’s just about out of contract.
Celtic will have other, better, options … and we are probably at least part of the way down the road to doing a deal for one of them. This one was largely a media invention, and that’s why I’m not all that worried by news he’s likely to go to Gent.
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