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Celtic’s Jota deal hits a complication

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Celtic’s hopes of signing Jota on a permanent basis could be impacted by a change in management at Benfica. 

On Tuesday Jorge Jesus was sacked as head coach after 16 months in charge- a period that saw Jota sent out on loan to Real Valladolid and Celtic. 

A 3-0 defeat away to Porto in the Portuguese Cup was the final straw for Jesus but caretaker Nelson Verissimo fared little better with a 3-1 defeat away to Porto in the league in his first match in charge. 

Verussimo coached Jota in the Benfica B side and although he is unlikely to get the job on a permanent basis a change in management may open the door for Jota to get a fresh opportunity at his boyhood club after impressing on loan at Celtic. 

Covering the issue this morning, BBC Gossip reported: 

On-loan winger Jota’s return to Benfica from Celtic to receive treatment for a hamstring injury has coincided with the sacking of veteran head coach Jorge Jesus and the appointment as interim boss of Nelson Verissimo, who was the 22-year-old coach with the reserve team. (Sunday Times, print edition) 

Celtic do have an option to buy Jota in the loan deal with Benfica but ultimately any deal will be down to the player, a change in management at Benfica is one aspect that the player will consider.

The immediate issue for Celtic is the condition of Jota’s hamstring which was injured in the 1-0 win over Hearts on December 2. 

Hopefully the warmer weather of Lisbon will prove beneficial with the winger due back at Celtic to prepare for the resumption of fixtures on January 17 when Hibs are the visitors to Celtic Park. 

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8 comments

  • Derek says:

    Why would it be an issue if Celtic already have the option to buy agreed? Only complication would be if Jota wanted to stay at benfica.

  • SFTB says:

    Were you unaware of the “option to buy” clause when you wrote this? Should you not be aware of these things if you run a football blog?

    Editor: Very aware, are you aware that the player has the right not to sign up? Perhaps circumstances have changed at the club he came through the ranks with, maybe a new manager will have a different view of someone who has impressed in the Europa League.

    • Bill Kirk says:

      Why publish rubbish? Has a contract, with option to buy clause included, been signed?
      How can a change of Manager impact on that?

    • SFTB says:

      Does he really have the legal option to not sign up? I do not believe that is so.

      Of course he can make life difficult by saying he is no longer happy to play well or give his best but he already committed to wages and a transfer fee when he signed up to our “contract with an option to buy”. As I said, we are the only ones with a legal option to let the deal slide. Benfica have already signed their right away as has Jota.

      Even if he has now had his head turned, by Benfica or another party, we can enforce his signing and it will be in our interest to do so. Even if he refuses to play well for us; we will get a bigger transfer fee tham we paid for him. The form Joya has displayed makes him eminently sellable and bigger clubs will be interested. We will not roll over because a new Benfica coach, with no say in the matter, wishes his predecessor had not agreed the deal. And we will not roll over to any reluctance on the player’s part, or that of his agent.

      As your subsequent article shows you jumped the gun on the reasons he was back in touch with Benfica and have spread needless alarm over a situation we have legally covered. I suspect Joya is jappy enough to cme here and reckons he will only have a short stay before moving on to something better. A win:win all around, except for the new Benfica coach.

      Editor: Jota will decide, no one else. Celtic and Benfica can come up with any deal, agreement, contract that they like, if the player doesn’t fancy it, if he thinks that Benfica or elsewhere is a better option the ‘option to buy’ means hee haw.

      • SFTB says:

        Simple question. Is Celtic’s right to enforce the “option to buy”, legally binding on Benfica and Joya or not? You have danced around avoiding this question.

        My view is that only Celtic can let this deal slide. Jota can make life difficult by refusing to perform but the dela is still enforceable and I have stated how and why this is so.

        Would you dign Jota at £6.5 m even if he was (now) reluctant to come here. I would still do it because we could sell him on for more or put him out on a shop window loan. The one thing we should not do is roll over to the player and release him from his obligations if he has a little problem.

        P.S. Your subsequent article suggests this whole scenario is now bust anyway.

  • Holysmokes says:

    Please stop being ****holes. If a manager who doesn’t rate him leaves and a manager who does want to play him in the Benfica first team is installed, then that may change his mind about a permanent move away from his boyhood club. No point in staying if he’s not going to get a game but if it’s first team football they’re offering that could change his mind. The author makes a reasonable point (although, admittedly, pure speculation) so I’m not sure where the vitriolic attacks are coming from.
    And he talks about the option to buy: ‘Celtic do have an option to buy Jota in the loan deal with Benfica but ultimately any deal will be down to the player, a change in management at Benfica is one aspect that the player will consider.’
    If I’m missing something I apologise but these replies seem unnecessarily spiteful to me.

  • Rob O'Keeffe says:

    As Joe states,it could be a complication.However,if Jota doesn’t want to permanently sign for Celtic then I would be sure that Ange wants players at The Club who are totally committed to the cause and he would wish the guy well and it would be onwards and upwards.KTF

  • Andy Morrison says:

    The chance to sign in the clause was a issue Celtic and jota had when he signed on loan cause Benfica bring in a new manager doesn’t change that option.

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