How Celtic missed a £200,000 bargain for Benfica winger Jota

Celtic can keep Jota at Parkhead for around £6m – a figure that already seems a reasonable deal for the impressive Portuguese winger.

Jota progressed through the ranks at the Stadium of Light before two loan deals. (PATRICIA DE MELO MOREIRA/AFP via Getty Images)

The agreed option-to-buy fee is said to have been entered into the Benfica winger’s loan deal when he hooked up with Ange Postecoglou’s side at the start of the season.

And after a series of impressive display has seen an increasing clamour for the Parkhead chiefs to dip their hands into their pockets to fund a move – but one man’s steal is another man’s expensive deal and former one Parkhead employee believes they could be paying more than necessary for the 22-year-old.

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David Moss, who worked as a Celtic scout under several Parkhead managers including Ronny Deila, held talks with the then teenager in 2015 before he signed formally for Benfica.

Jota has a set fee in his loan deal from Benfica. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

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The Super Eagles were seeking around £200,000 development fee for the winger, but kept him on from their B team and Jota has since played several times for the Lisbon senior side as well as on loan deals at Real Valladolid and now Celtic.

He could have been in Scotland earlier, and cheaper though, former Falkirk midfielder Moss has revealed.

“I was scouting for the Celtic academy when [Portugal based Celtic scout Helena Costa] said to me: 'David, you need to try and sign this winger before he signs a contract with Benfica.' I went over there a few times to watch him and met him and his parents. I am still in touch with Jota's dad Pedro now.

"For whatever reason, I just don't think Celtic were in a position back then to go and spend £200k or whatever the fee would have been to take on a teenage player with no first-team experience.,” Moss told the Daily Mail.

“I haven't seen every game Jota has played but he is a player Celtic should try to sign. Clubs down south will definitely be sitting up taking note of his form now.

"His strength is his technique. He is a typical Portuguese winger with creativity.

"The good thing about him is that he has always scored goals and produced an end product. 'He is not a winger who has no outcome. Helena always said he had an end product."

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