Earlier on I wrote about Ange needing to be tied down on a long term deal.
Part of the issue here, part of what might appear to some as a sudden bout of needless anxiety is because we’ve been given a lesson, as if we needed one, on the way loyalty has become a rare commodity in the game.
We’ve been handed it by our own players.
Today Juranovic signed for Union Berlin.
Giakoumakis is expected to move soon.
Giakoumakis and Juranovic gave us just 18 months.
This continues a trend which has become depressingly familiar.
No footballer should be leaving a club after 18 months. These guys come here and sign long-term contracts. Is it too much to ask that we make some of them at least pretend that they take that seriously, and honour them?
Our club has a policy of letting players move on if they want to which is laudable and smart and yet one which manages to make us look weak and stupid at exactly the same time. Weak because we give these players more power than we need, and stupid because it generates the impression that we don’t require loyalty when people sign for us.
But let’s not pretend that it’s not laudable and smart as well, because there are great young players who otherwise might never come to Scotland who can be convinced to sign for us because they know that the club can turn them into major talents and that this will be to the betterment of their careers.
We aren’t in the business of holding hostages; players appreciate that, and it makes Celtic seem like a club that cares about them and their futures.
Still, when someone comes in with talk about what a great move it is and then starts making noises about wanting away a year later it leaves a bad taste in your mouth and there is a part of me that thinks it’s better just to get these guys out the door rather than have their attitudes toxify the rest of the club.
But this is not a bacterium which can be kept at bay by rigorous scrubbing of the door handles.
This is an airborne virus, capable of infecting anyone.
And it’s virulent because of that big, bloated, money soaked league south of the border, and although Juranovic and Giakoumakis are not headed there it’s the cash that is driving their decisions, and we would be foolish not to acknowledge it.
So the question “what price loyalty?” has a very simple answer.
More than we can afford, which means that when it comes to Celtic we shouldn’t count on it.
That makes those handful of players who do give us more than a brief “hello and farewell” special ones, worth everything we throw at them, worth all the adulation they get.