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Do it now- Hartson urges Celtic to complete early transfer deal

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John Hartson has urged the Celtic hierarchy to sign Jota on a permanent deal before it is too late.

Celtic struck a deadline day deal with Benfica to take the winger on a season long loan with the option to secure a permanent deal included.

The player will need to agree to a permanent move but with a deal in place with Benfica one vital aspect of a deal is already in place.

Jota was tipped for the top as he starred for the Portuguese youth sides but for some reason it never quite worked out for him in Lisbon with last season spent on loan at Real Valladolid who ended up relegated from La Liga.

The 22-year-old became an instant hit at Celtic, striking up a brilliant partnership with Kyogo Furuhashi that is producing goals and assists domestically and in the Europa League.

Jota’s international pedigree will be well known across the major European leagues, if he continues his form at Celtic there is likely to be renewed interest from clubs willing to gamble on the winger reproducing his Celtic form elsewhere.

Hartson told The Sun:

You do it now. That’s the next one. In January, you do it. He’s made a great impact and although Celtic have first refusal it doesn’t mean you get him over the line. They have an option to get him, but his agent and Jota will have the decision whether it will be Celtic or not.

You don’t want Jota to be on 20 goals by February and then a Bayern Munich come in and say to his agent, ‘We’ll give you £10million if you get him to us’. That could happen. That’s why I’m saying, get him done.

A Bayern Munich or a PSG might come in and say, ‘We want this kid, he’s 22, he has lit the place up at Celtic, he looks dynamite’.

You know agents are running the game right now — they run football. They speak to clubs, they speak to chairmen. All managers have agents, this is how they do the deals. I would recommend Celtic do it as swiftly as they can because he is a very special player.

With no international commitments Jota will be refreshed and ready to go for next Saturday’s League Cup semi-final against St Johnstone at Hampden.

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