Get all your news in one place.
100’s of premium titles.
One app.
Start reading
The National (Scotland)
The National (Scotland)
Liam Bryce

Where 4 Celtic transfer rumours fit within club's signing philosophy

THE height of transfer season is frenzied enough without the tantalising knowledge your club is sitting pretty on an extremely healthy bank balance.

Celtic fans are expecting significant movement this summer as the second Brendan Rodgers era kicks into gear, his return to the club being followed by the sale of Jota for £25million, the impact of which was teased in an announcement to the London Stock Exchange regarding earnings ‘significantly higher than previous expectations’. Pair that development with the multiple reports that Rodgers’ return was largely facilitated by assurances that the club is prepared back him to compete more readily in the Champions League, and it’s little wonder supporters have braced themselves for an intriguing summer. Odin Thiago Holm and Marco Tilio have already been added to Rodgers’ ranks as he prepares to take his squad on a pre-season tour of Japan next week.

There will undoubtedly be further signings to come, but the rumour has been pushed into overdrive of late with a number of names swirling around as potential targets. It can, therefore, be rather difficult to separate the wheat from the chaff at this time of year, with Celtic generally very efficient at keeping their business under wraps. But what we can do is take each rumour individually and assess whether said player would fit into the transfer model Celtic work to.

Signing young, high potential players for relatively small fees with a view to eventually making a considerable profit – and winning multiple trophies – has been the basis for a number of successful deals over recent years. Virgil van Dijk, Victor Wanyama, Moussa Dembele and Kristoffer Ajer are just a few such examples, with Jota becoming the latest to follow them.


A player Rodgers already knows well from a loan spell at Leicester, Celtic have been linked with the Brazilian winger as he heads for the exit door at Shakhtar Donetsk. At 23 and with his best years likely still ahead of him, Tete is looking for a new home to reinvigorate his career.

After joining Shakhtar from Gremio in 2019, he announced his arrival on the European scene with a standout display in the Ukrainian side’s Champions League upset at Real Madrid in 2020, contributing a goal and an assist.

Since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in 2022, Tete has had two loans, one at Leicester and the other with Lyon. But the news that he is set to have the remainder of his Shakhtar contract torn up points to a player craving stability and a fresh start, which is exactly what Celtic can offer.

Rodgers is clearly a fan, and will be able to offer the South American the chance to play in a winning team, not to mention a return to the Champions League. Once rated at £20million, a positive spell in Glasgow could feasibly see Tete return to that bracket as he enters his prime years.


Out-of-favour at Manchester United even before sustaining a long-term knee injury, the Dutch midfielder was once a key cog in the swashbuckling Ajax side which captivated Europe with a thrilling semi-final run in the 2018/19 Champions League. But he struggled to make any sort of impact at Old Trafford after a £40million transfer, and not even a reunion with his former Ajax manager Erik ten Hag led to a revival in fortunes.

An unsuccessful loan at Everton followed by a cruel knee injury make him a player in need of a career jolt. Celtic have been able to offer that opportunity down the years, but Van de Beek’s price-tag and wages would likely dictate a loan as the only option. Such deals have become less common at Parkhead in recent years, and while exceptions can always be made, it’s not clear Van de Beek is the game-changing player who would make it a no-brainer. Celtic would also likely be required to make a significant wage contribution for a player they have little prospect of signing permanently, raising questions over the long-term benefits of pursuing the transfer.

Transfer business is not an exact science, of course, but Van de Beek doesn’t seem to fit the Celtic model at this stage.


A highly-rated midfielder plying his trade with Young Boys in Switzerland, Rieder’s name has cropped up in speculation frequently in recent weeks. At just 21 and already rated at around £13million, Rieder would be an ambitious pursuit for Celtic to embark on.

The club’s record spend on a player is the £9m paid to Paris Saint-Germain for Odsonne Edouard in 2018, but they have built even more financial muscle in the years since. Furnishing Rodgers’ ambitions with a statement transfer would be a serious show of ambition from Celtic as they prepare for next season’s Champions League and the pursuit of a third consecutive Premiership title. Rieder would not only be a eye-catching addition, but a signal that the club are levelling up in terms of the markets they can operate in.

Such a fee would not come without risk, at least from a business perspective, in terms of eventually making a profit on the player. But that, of course, is not the be all and end all when signing players, especially if they can help take Celtic to another level.

With plenty of interest in Rieder across Europe, however, he would not come cheap or easily.


Celtic have enjoyed numerous successes in the Asian market over recent years, a venture which coincided with Ange Postecoglou’s arrival and his knowledge of a largely untapped pool of talent. It makes absolute sense that the club would continue down this path, and Rodgers indicated at his unveiling last month that it was something he was very much open to.

Gangwon winger Yang has clearly observed how players from the K-League and J-League have made significant impacts in Scotland and decided he’s ready to do whatever it takes to make it happen. The winger is so keen to join Celtic that earlier in July he told Gangwon he’d be willing to donate his own salary to help facilitate a deal.

Whether the transfer happens or not remains to be seen, but it is little surprise that Celtic have again turned eyes towards the Far East in their pursuit of new signings. Gangwon are seemingly reluctant to sell Yang at this point in time as they toil to stave off relegation, but any deal – whether this summer or further down the line – would not be a bank-breaker for Celtic.

Sign up to read this article
Read news from 100’s of titles, curated specifically for you.
Already a member? Sign in here
Related Stories
Top stories on inkl right now
One subscription that gives you access to news from hundreds of sites
Already a member? Sign in here
Our Picks
Fourteen days free
Download the app
One app. One membership.
100+ trusted global sources.