GRAHAM SPIERS interviewed the MailSport chief Stephen McGowan on his podcast about Celtic and Neil Lennon’s departure.
They chronicled the season and McGowan shared a very interesting bit of transfer news from last summer.
We all knew Celtic were interested in Ivan Toney and we didn’t get him in the end. However, we weren’t aware of how close the deal was in the end.
McGowan tells Spiers Celtic actually had Toney in the building at Celtic Park, the player wanted to sign but the club wouldn’t pay £6m to land the striker.
It seems absolutely crazy they would not pay the money for a guy who would have probably trebled in value over a two to three year period.
Toney was seen as Edouard’s successor but the deal was pulled and he’s gone elsewhere and doing really well.
Stephen McGowan said : “The one that sums it up best is Ivan Toney, who they had in Glasgow, actually in the building – who wanted to sign for Celtic and they could have got for £6 million. For whatever reason, probably financial, they decided not to commit and signed Ajeti.”
There’s an argument to be made that Toney would have suffered in this Celtic set up the way the team have played this season. However, the club took a punt on Ajeti instead of Toney, perhaps because he was a little bit cheaper and the structure of the deal suited the club better.
If that’s the case, Peter Lawwell scuppered this deal, like he has done many times for players managers wanted in.
The CEO is heading out this summer and we believe it’s overdue. While business is his thing, Peter strayed too much into footballing matters and didn’t trust the football men to make the decisions on players.