John Park admits he wanted Richario Zivkovic at Celtic but where is he now?

Celtic fans show their support during the UEFA Champions League group B match between Celtic FC and Bayern Muenchen at Celtic Park on October 31, 2017 in Glasgow, United Kingdom.

Richario Zivkovic was in John Park's sights before he joined Ajax in 2014 but did Scottish Premiership champions Celtic dodge a bullet?

Luis Suarez of AFC Ajax celebrates scoring during the UEFA Champions League Group G match between AFC Ajax and AJ Auxerre at the Amsterdam ArenA on October 19, 2010 in Amsterdam,...

Richario Zivkovic followed in the footsteps of Luis Suarez when he swapped Groningen for Ajax in 2014. But, while Suarez shone in Amsterdam, going on to play for Liverpool and Barcelona after establishing himself as one of the world’s elite, Zivkovic’s journey has panned out a little differently.

According to Goal, Ajax beat Barcelona, Manchester City, PSG and Liverpool to the signing of the then 17-year-old wonder kid. Celtic, too, were interested.


At least that is according to former Hoops scout John Park.


“Richairo Zivkovic was another player I liked with them at that time, he was a striker formed at Groningen,” Park told the Daily Record of the striker while discussing the deal that saw Virgil van Dijk leave the Green and Whites for Celtic Park.

Yet while Van Dijk’s stellar spell at Celtic paved the way for him to become arguably the world’s best defender, and certainly the most expensive, it is tempting to wonder what would have happened to Zivkovic in Glasgow.

(L-R) Richario Zivkovic of Holland U21, Aristote Nkaka Bazunga of Belgium U21  during the    match between Holland U21 v Belgium U21 at the De Vijverberg on March 22, 2018 in Doetinchem...

Because his highly-anticipated move to Ajax didn’t go to plan. He played just seven Eredivisie games for the Champions League quarter-finalists, scoring just once.

And after ill-fated loan spell at Willem II and Utrecht that made him look less Luis Suarez and more Freddy Adu, Zivkovic is now in China after another disappointing spell in Belgium with KV Oostende.

The 22-year-old joined Changchun Yatai in February. This one-time wonderkid looks like another forgotten talent who has fallen by the wayside. But could things have been different if John Park had got his man?

Richario Zivkovic of Holland U21  during the    match between Holland U21 v Belgium U21 at the De Vijverberg on March 22, 2018 in Doetinchem Netherlands

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