The Curious Case of Finnbogason

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Remember Alfreð Finnbogason?!

A player who many Celtic fans used on social media to vilify the Celtic board for not spending the cash to bring the striker in when Celtic were floundering in front of goal.

At the time Alfred was playing for SC Heerenveen and banging in goals for fun. Heerenveen were not letting their star striker go cheap and rejected bids upwards of £5million when Celtic were said to be interested in the player.

The outrage from a lot of Celtic fans that the club weren’t willing to back their manager with cold hard cash was loud enough for everyone to hear. “We spend 1 and 2 million here and there on duds like Amido, Pukki and Bangura when we could just buy one proven striker” was the rhetoric among disgruntled supporters. Of course they had a point! It is frustrating to see Celtic throw money out the window searching in the bargain bin of European football. The fact was Celtic were buying players that fit within their model and budget but the scouting team were just not coming through when it came to getting goals. So why wouldn’t Celtic, just this once sign a player that was capable of scoring goals to help us out in our European quests?

The reason why is staring us in the face now. Alfreð got his move away from Heerenveen to Real Sociedad for the sum of €7.5million rising to $10million with add-ons last summer. An offer Celtic could never in a million years compete with. The Icelandic striker also commanding a handsome wage packet in the process. He was never within our grasp but yet the headlines read that we had missed out on the boy and that riled some fans.

Real paid the cash and got the player and fair play to them but as they have learned since the transfer, lighting it up in one league doesn’t mean you’re guaranteed to do it in another. Since his move last summer the player has played on 22 occasions for Sociedad and only scored a measly two goals. Now I’m not wanting to do the player a massive disservice, I’m aware that he’s had to come from the bench on numerous occasions since his switch and that could be a mitigating factor as to why he isn’t bursting the net for his new team. My point though is this – there is no such thing as guaranteed goals, no matter how much or how little you spend on a player. Just ask Chelsea and Man Utd who have respectively shelled out a lot of cash for Fernando Torres and Falcao, only to see the players struggle for goals.

There is a common misconception that the more you spend the better player you get, it’s just not true in todays inflated market. That’s why Celtic and the board should not be under pressure to shell out these massive fees for players that might not even cut the mustard when they come. Admittedly our cheaper options have came up very short of the expectations that are put on a Celtic striker in the past few seasons for whatever reason. However Celtic can sleep easy knowing they haven’t shelled out £11million for the likes of Ross McCormack and £6-7million for Robert Snodgrass and yes upwards of €7.5million for Finnbogason. All good players but at that price I’d rather take my chances with the weans at Lennonxtown.



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