Six goalkeepers, disgraced defenders, long contracts and prohibitive wages – the problems Celtic are facing as they try to downsize their squad this summer

Swiss international striker Albian Ajeti made just six starting appearances for Celtic last season. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

With the additional lucrative guarantee of Champions League group stage revenue coming in the new season, the Premiership title holders can build on the position of strength their manager has guided them into with his overhaul and the rejuvenation of the team during his first campaign at the helm.

Yet, as that stock market statement also underlined, Celtic still have to balance the books when it comes to their squad size.

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“Player registration valuations and player swaps can and often do significantly influence Celtic’s financial performance in addition to revenue,” they said. 2022 to mid-September 2022 following the close of the transfer window and in accordance with its previously recognized schedule.

Former Scotland international goalkeeper Scott Bain has dropped down the Celtic pecking order following Benjamin Siegrist’s arrival at the club. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

So while Celtic maintain a proactive approach to onboard new additions to the Posteocglou squad as quickly as possible, they will also explore their options when it comes to securing players who are surplus to requirements. of the payroll.

In each department of the first team, prunings are not lacking and could be carried out before the transfer window closes on September 1.


With the signing of Benjamin Siegrist from Dundee United this week, Celtic now have six goalkeepers. Siegrist was recruited to seriously challenge Joe Hart for the number one position, pushing Scott Bain down the pecking order.

Belgian full-back Boli Bolingoli is entering the final year of his contract at Celtic. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

The former Dundee keeper signed a new contract, which runs until 2024, as recently as January this year, but his first team opportunities are now likely to be even more limited.

Greece international Vasilis Barkas, also on a two-year deal, has been loaned out to Utrecht for the new season, while Northern Ireland international Conor Hazard is in the middle of his loan spell with Finnish champions HJK Helsinki.

While Bain, Barkas and Hazard all appear to have little long-term prospects at Celtic, there is an emerging and much-loved replacement for Hart and Siegrist in the form of 19-year-old England international Tobi Oluwayemi who was on the bench for several European matches last season.


Belgian full-back Boli Bolingoli and French centre-back Christopher Jullien are both entering the final year of their contracts at Celtic.

Bolingoli only made two appearances under Postecoglou last season and securing a permanent exit for the 26-year-old this summer would suit both sides.

Jullien is fit again after a long recovery from the serious knee injury he suffered in December 2020, but the 29-year-old is expected to continue to struggle for playing time as Postecoglou sticks to his duo now established central defense of Cameron Carter-Vickers and Carl Starfelt.

Dutch defender Osaze Urhoghide, under contract until 2025, spent the second half of last season on loan at Belgian club Ostend and the 21-year-old may still have to go elsewhere for first-team football.


Even with the departures of Tom Rogic and Nir Bitton at the end of last season, there is still a surplus of midfielders at Celtic.

Captain Callum McGregor, Japan playmaker Reo Hatate, Denmark Under-21 international Matt O’Riley and Scotland internationals David Turnbull and James Forrest will continue to be the essentials in this area, while the compatriot of Hatate, Yosuke Ideguchi, will be looking to make a bigger impact than the only starting appearance he managed last season.

Among those who could be transferred this month are Ismaila Soro, the Ivory Coast international under contract until 2024 and linked on a loan to Partizan Belgrade, and England midfielder Liam Shaw who spent time on loan at Motherwell last season and still has three years left on his contract.

Republic of Ireland international James McCarthy is also contracted until 2025, but the 31-year-old started just six games last season and looks unlikely to improve on that ratio in the new country.


The proven firepower of Giorgios Giakoumakis, Kyogo Furuhashi, Liel Abada, Jota and Daizen Maeda leaves little chance for other members of the existing squad to find a place in the attacking zone on the Postecoglou side.

Mikey Johnston, who has struggled with injuries, made just five starts last season and the 23-year-old, who has three years left on his contract, could be tempted by the prospect of a loan move in a bid to revive his career.

Swiss international striker Albian Ajeti struggled to make a lasting impact last season, although he was given the opportunity to do so by Postecoglou early in the campaign.

The 25-year-old is under contract until 2024 and finding a suitable move for the former West Ham United man could prove problematic, given his status as one of the highest earners on the Celtic wage bill. A possible return to his native country with Basel in January would have failed due to their inability to match his current salary.

Ajeti will likely remain a peripheral figure if he stays with teenage forwards Joey Dawson and Johnny Kenny likely both ahead of him in the queue as Celtic look to push forward the development of this duo next season.

About Brandon A. Hood

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