Nir Bitton brushes off Celtic testimonial question

By David Walton

October 7, 2021

Nir Bitton has dismissed talk of a potential future Celtic testimonial as he classily stated that he’s just grateful for how long he’s been at the club.

Bitton is one of if not the most successful player in the Celtic dressing room. The Israeli has won 13 trophies at Parkhead and has shown how useful he is under the likes of Ronny Deila, Brendan Rodgers, Neil Lennon, and now Ange Postecoglou.

The years simply fly by now with Bitton still at the heart of the first-team squad. And after signing in August 2013, he’s now only two years away from dedicating 10 years of service to the football club.

Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

Naturally, this can lead to talk of testimonials and charity games. But Bitton has been quick to dismiss the chat as he instead bigged up what he’s got at the moment.

As quoted by the Scottish Sun, Bitton said: “I’ve not even thought about that, and it’s not about that for me.

“I have been in Scotland for eight years now and I don’t take it for granted. I have seen a lot of people come and go at this club. So I believe it’s a great achievement for myself to be at Celtic so for long. But it’s not about the length of time you are at one club. It’s about trophies and titles.

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“When I first came to Celtic I couldn’t have imagined being here for so many years. If you had said that to me I would have said, ‘No chance’”.

Nir Bitton and his Celtic service shouldn’t be underappreciated

There’s no denying there’s a mix when it comes to how supporters view Bitton. Therefore, we won’t pretend that he’s heavily adored by everyone in the support.

But there has to be an appreciation of just how much the Israeli has given to the football club over the years. By all accounts, he hasn’t been a hassle in the changing room either. He’s never plastered on the front pages of newspapers or talking up a move on the back.

Bitton has proven to be a useful utility man. There’s a reason the likes of Rodgers and Postecoglou have kept im around. They believed in his ability and felt he could do a solid job for the team.

Photo by Craig Foy/SNS Group via Getty Images

Nobody can say that Bitton isn’t a talent. Technically, he’s one of the soundest performers in the squad. Whilst the odd lapse in concentration can at times hurt him, it’s certainly not something that’s overly frequent.

Sometimes you wonder whether his style goes against him. Some view him as not trying enough or not caring about the games he’s involved in. Truthfully, however, Nir has always had a laid back look regardless of what Celtic team he plays in. Whether it was when he first arrived under Lennon or now under Postecoglou, he’s always come across as a relaxed footballer.

As for talk of a testimonial, we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it. Yes his contract runs until 2023, but nothing can be taken for granted at Celtic. Just as Bitton himself has already admitted.