Celtic’s lucrative sales of Odsonne Edouard and Kristoffer Ajer have been hailed as ‘incredibly good business’ by Sky Sports pundit Paul Robinson.
The former Tottenham Hotspur and Blackburn Rovers goalkeeper was speaking to Football Insider.
Both Edouard and Ajer had entered the final year of their deals at Celtic Park, meaning that, when January rolled around, they would have been in a position to arrange a free transfer for the summer of 2022.
Celtic agreed to sell Ajer to new Premier League arrivals Brentford back in July, banking an initial £13.5million, a fee which could rise depending on how he performs (via Sky Sports).
Edouard had to wait until the end of the transfer window to seal his move to Crystal Palace, this time for a base figure of £14million. Again, that could eventually climb to £18.5million (also via Sky Sports), albeit with some of that profit going to PSG.
According to Transfermarkt, Edouard’s sale is the third-biggest in Celtic’s history, with Ajer slotting into fourth on the all-time list.
Robinson says Celtic have pulled off a ‘very difficult’ feat, overcoming what looked like a weak negotiating position, but the focus must now turn to how CEO Dominic McKay will use those funds.
“That is incredibly good business considering they both only had 12 months left on their contract,” he said.
“When players of that quality get down to that stage of their contract it is very difficult to keep them and in a lot of cases they will leave for free a year later.
“You just hope some of that money gets reinvested into the squad in the January window.”
The extent to which this really good business also depends on how Celtic’s replacements fare.
Georgios Giakoumakis looks to be some coup, having netted a league-high 26 goals for a relegated VVV-Venlo side in the Eredivisie.
While Robinson’s praise for McKay’s ‘incredibly good’ negotiating power is certainly correct, only time will tell how effective this summer’s rebuild has really been.
In other news, Alan Hutton offers his reaction to another outgoing.
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