Celtic FC is one of the most followed clubs in the UK. Many great players have played for the club in the past. However, the club has also made quite a few horror signings. These signings were not only bad for the club but also for the players. Let us have a look at some of the worst ever Celtic FC signings.
Here are the top 10 worst ever Celtic FC signings –
10. Stuart Slater
The highly-rated Stuart Slater arrived in Glasgow in August 1992 following a £1.5 million transfer from West Ham United (a then-record amount for Celtic), and appeared to be a start buy. Rangers had been flashing the cash and Celtic wished to show they could at least try to keep up.
Quick with exceptional ball control Slater had shown on many occasions at Upton Park that he had the ability to run at and beat defences. Consequently, when signed by Liam Brady , he was warmly welcomed by Celtic support which had traditionally cherished such entertainers and were now desperately seeking a new hero.
Slater made his debut coming on as a substitute in a 1–1 away draw against Rangers, but did not make an impression at Celtic. Thirteen months later, he returned south to Ipswich Town, having scored three goals in 43 appearances and earning himself a place among the worst ever Celtic FC signings.
9. Wayne Biggins
A name that has become synonymous with one of the bleakest periods in Celtic’s history, Wayne Biggins arrived at Parkhead from Barnsley in November 1993 in a part-exchange deal which saw the South Yorkshire club pick up Andy Payton and £100,000. It was a no-win situation.
Whatever manager Lou Macari saw in Biggins, it was not shared by the Celtic support who were left wondering why the limited but hard-working Payton was swapped for an unknown 33 year-old English journeyman with not exactly a stellar record. A reasonable striker in lower-division English football, but just not Celtic class. A good record with Stoke was the selling point, but with his last club (Barnsley) he had achieved little.
He was thrown into a demoralised First XI at Celtic to score goals in a side that struggled to make any. It was a task which he was never going to fulfil. It was too much to ask of him. In a short Celtic career which lasted just four months, Biggins failed to hit the net and headed back down south in March 1994 with former club Stoke kindly paying £125,000.
8. Roy Keane
A Manchester United legend, Keane’s powers were on the wane when he joined Celtic in the 2004-05 season. Having been released by the Red Devils in November after a series of disputes with Sir Alex Ferguson, Keane officially became a Celtic player when the transfer window opened in January 2005.
Keane’s career in Scotland couldn’t have got off to a worse start, with the Hoops knocked out of the Scottish Cup by Clyde on his debut – a match also remembered for the disastrous debut of Chinese defender Du Wei.
Accustomed to the ultra-professional world of English football, it’s fair to say Keane struggled to adapt to the customs north of the border and as a result, earned himself a place among the worst ever Celtic FC signings.
7. Stephane Henchoz
One of Martin O’Neill’s last signings, the Swiss international defender was brought in as cover for Bobo Balde and Stanislav Varga on a 6-month contract after falling out of favour at Liverpool, where he had won several trophies including the UEFA Cup. However, with Balde and Varga as solid as the Berlin Wall, Henchoz found himself stranded at Checkpoint Charlie, and left the club in the huff only after 4 not-so convincing appearances. One of the worst ever Celtic FC signings, Henchoz went on to better things at Wigan.
6. Henri Camara
Given the unenviable task of replacing the talismanic Henrik Larsson upfront for Celtic, the Senegalese striker arrived on loan from Wolves with a huge weight on his shoulders. Although blessed with blistering pace and a fine eye for goal, Camara just didn’t fit in at Celtic. Encased in an ageing side devoid of ideas, Camara simply added to the gloom with his mediocre showings and his wonderful talent for disappearing in matches. He deservingly earns himself a place among the worst ever Celtic FC signings.
Scored a few goals and showed glimpses of what he could do, but never in big matches like the Old Firm games or in the Champions League, and was soon punted back to Wolves half-way through what was supposed to be a season-long loan in which MartinO’Neill paid £1.5 million for him.