Lagerbielke £3m signing asks questions of Celtic’s decision making

The £3m transfer of Lagerbielke in and now out of Celtic in under six months asks more questions of those in charge…

Gustaf Lagerbielke looks set to sign Lecce on loan until the end of the season with the Serie A side having an option to buy. The Swedish centre back was signed for £3m back in August and arrived at the club highly rated, and it seemed with good reason as he was seen as one of the best defenders in the Swedish Allsvenskan, and had represented his country at international level.

Despite a sticky start he looked a player of real promise, but for whatever reasons wasn’t given a run in the first team. He played at Ibrox in the 1-0 win in September then was a little unlucky to receive a second yellow in the Champions League opener against Feyenoord in Rotterdam, and his lack of real pace at that incident seemed to have highlighted his weakness, a lack of pace.  That begs the question of course why this wasn’t spotted by those doing the analysis on any potential Celtic signings.

 Liam Scales and Gustaf Lagerbielke celebrate following the victory during the UEFA Champions League match between Celtic FC and Feyenoord at Celtic Park on December 13, 2023. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Liam Scales of course has made the left side centre back position his own, but Gustaf for most of the campaign wasn’t deemed good enough for a place in the squad despite being fit and ready to play for the majority of the time.

Things looked like taking a turn for the better for the Swedish international when he grabbed the winner against Feyenoord in the Champions League back in December, but again for whatever reason he was seen as surplus to requirements.

ROTTERDAM, 19Ã09-2023, Stadium Feijenoord / De Kuip , Champions League , season 2023 / 2024, Feyenoord – Celtic , result 2-0 , Celtic player Gustaf Lagerbielke slaps Feyenoord player Igor Paixao in the face and gets send off with red card and causes a penalty Feyenoord – Celtic 

It’s no surprise he’s now heading out the door, but it raises many questions, why was he signed in the first place? Who did the footballing due diligence? What was Brendan’s role in this as he was a few months into the job when Gustaf was signed? And the big question, who made the decision to signed him?

We know that Carl Starfelt’s agent recommended Lagerbielke to Celtic when working with the club on Starfelt’s transfer to Celta Vigo. Was the agent’s recommendation enough or did Celtic carry out proper diligence on the player? You have to presume that they did just that so what went wrong?

IMAGO / Sportimage –  3 September 2023. Cyriel Dessers of Rangers fouls Gustaf Lagerbielke of Celtic before setting up theRangers disallowed goal during the Scottish Premiership match at Ibrox which Celtic won 1-0. Photo Neil Hanna / Sportimage 

Lagerbielke might be better suited to a side that sits on and plays a low block against higher quality opposition, so Lecce won’t have the same problem with Celtic’s central defenders now playing well inside the opposition’s half at times. 

So it raises questions of those in charge and Brendan’s role in all of it. Signing a player for £3 million but then deeming him not suitable for our system  after only a few games is shambolic to say the least, but I guess that’s what we are coming to expect from those in charge of our club at the moment.

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About Author

An ordinary everyday Celtic supporters hailing and still residing in Govan in the shadows of the enemy. I’m a season ticket holder. I Witnessed my first Celtic game in 1988 and have attended when I can ever since. Growing up in the 90s I witnessed Celtic at their lowest, and now appreciate the historic success we enjoy today. I enjoy writing about this wonderful football club and hopefully will continue to do so. I’ve always been a keen writer and initially started this a hobby. My ambition is to one day become as good an author as my fellow Celtic Star colleagues.


  1. Patrick Cullen on

    the manager or coach should allways have the final say on who we sign not some bean counter