Celtic close to out-spending 20-21 transfer total, but there's more to do

By Euan Davidson

July 23, 2021

Celtic have nearly spent more this transfer window than in the entirety of the 20-21 season.

With Kyogo Furuhashi, Liel Abada, Carl Starfelt, Liam Shaw and Osaze Urhoghide all through the door, the club are clearly showing ambition after the tumultuous 20-21 campaign.

Last season, the club spent £4.5m each on Ajeti [BBC] and Barkas [BBC]. David Turnbull, easily the best signing of last year, arrived for up to £3.25m with add-ons [BBC], while Shane Duffy, Diego Laxalt, Mohamed Elyounoussi and Jonjoe Kenny all joined on loan throughout the season.

Duffy’s loan fee alone cost £2m [Sun].

And as good as those signings seemed at the time, most absolutely didn’t work out. The hope, then, is that Celtic’s continued spending actually pays dividends this time around.

Celtic, so far, are backing Ange Postecoglou in the transfer market. Unheralded arrivals like Lawal, Shaw and Urhoghide required compensation fees, while Furuhashi cost up to £5m, Liel Abada was a reported £3.5m, and Starfelt £4m.

All in, it’s an outlay of around £13.5m thus far.

It’s ambitious stuff, reinforcing in key areas. And it looks a long way from stopping there.

Albeit, the circumstances are a little different this time. Kristoffer Ajer has already left for a reported £13.5m, with Odsonne Edouard and Olivier Ntcham sure to follow. That could recoup Celtic another £20m at least, and surely implies there’s more spending to come.

Celtic are backing the boss, and there’s more transfer business to come

Ange Postecoglou is, by his own admission, not an accountant. So it’s imperative that the board keep listening to him regarding targets and leave him to deal with the actual nitty-gritty of managing Celtic.

He’ll realise, though, that the Ajer sale has essentially recouped the total transfer spend so far. That ought to excite him, with Celtic desperately needing more cover at centre-back, on the wings and most likely, up front.

Photo by Steve Welsh/Getty Images

For once, the board are actually acting shrewdly. Fine, it wasn’t in enough time to put out a better squad against FC Midtjylland. But bearing in mind the pandemic, business was always going to be a little slower this summer, as it was last season.

Even if Edouard doesn’t leave, Celtic essentially have a clean slate in terms of spending, despite bringing in five new first-team players. Lawal, clearly one for the future, has exciting potential, but will likely star for the B Team in 21-22.

Fine, a lot needs to be done yet. But we’re sending out a warning to our rivals: we’ve got the resources, the wherewithal and the muscle to get our title back.

In other news: Kris Ajer’s parting words put Celtic in good light