Following Kristoffer Ajer’s call up to the Norwegian national team squad at just 19 years of age, the question on supporters’ lips is whether the defender has become former manager Rony Deila’s best signing at the club.
Deila was a surprise choice as Celtic manager, joining the club in the summer of 2014 on a 12-month rolling contract. The 42-year-old only had managing experience in his native Norway, guiding Stromsgodset to their first title in 43 years before joining the Hoops.
Celtic’s decision to hire him was a risk, but they may have felt his knowledge of football across Europe could help the club take on a different direction - and players soon arrived at Celtic Park from the continent.
Stefan Scepovic, Logan Bailly, Erik Sviatchenko and Jozo Simunovic all moved to the Scottish champions for transfer fees, yet only the latter currently remains at the club as a bit-part player.
One player who was brought in during Deila’s reign and has achieved regular football, however, is Norwegian youngster Ajer. The 19-year-old joined as a youth-team player during Deila’s final season in charge, and the 6ft 5inch defender has gone on to establish himself as a regular in the first-team squad – starting 15 SPL games this term.
Ronny Deila's best permanent signing. Well done Kristoffer— Binderdunnit (@connollybhoy) March 13, 2018
Norwegian Maldini— John Hodgkiss (@19jhodgkiss) March 13, 2018
Well done big man well deserved, Starting to look the part— Barry Bhoy (@Barry_John_1967) March 13, 2018
Well done Kris, thoroughly deserved— Paolo (@pja7171) March 13, 2018
Very well deserved big fella, one of the first names on the team sheet for me.— Conor (@rowers1111) March 13, 2018