The agent of Celtic defender Kristoffer Ajer has confirmed that the Norwegian international is planning on leaving the Scottish champions in the summer.
The 21-year-old has just over two years remaining on his current deal at Parkhead but Tore Pedersen has said the player will not be signing a contract extension, with the centre-back seeking an exit:
“He will not extend his contract with Celtic and will leave this summer.There are several clubs who are interested, but I can’t go into their names. There are many who have followed him for a long period.There are also clubs who would like to have him, but who cannot afford it.There is generally great interest in Kristoffer.”
Supporters on Twitter are furious with Pedersen’s comments but some would sell up if they got a decent offer for Ajer:
Take the money and run, guy can't defend and he's not gonna get time for us in his preferred position.
— Johnny Frimpongy (@CelticDa1) March 12, 2020
Who will spend their 90 minutes getting players sent off if he leaves 🤔
— Sergio Georgino (@StoneNu) March 12, 2020
Good. Bang average
— Michael Heaney (@HeaneyOnTour) March 12, 2020
We will decide when he leaves.
— bomber (@bomber77oy77) March 12, 2020
He’s under contract no matter what his agent says unless Celtic agree he not going anywhere. But let’s face it sometimes he’s a bomb scare so I think we’d survive his departure.
— CelticRebel (@cfcdmg1888) March 12, 2020
Think he's a decent player but I feel if we got a good price for him we could easily replace him with a more complete player
— joe forbes (@joeforbes67) March 12, 2020
As long as we get a good fee for him he can gladly go.
— Paul (@wyndbhoy) March 12, 2020
Cash in.. weakest of the lot!!!!! Unreliable!
— Andrew stoutt (@andrew_stoutt) March 12, 2020
He wouldn't play another game for me if I was the head coach.
— Pádraig Ó Murchú (@murchu_padraig) March 12, 2020
If true shouldn't kick a ball for us again
— kennybhoy (@kennybhoy1888) March 12, 2020
Of course, it will be down to Celtic’s hierarchy to decide whether Ajer leaves at the end of the season or not. The length of his contract means they are under no immediate pressure to sell, but manager Neil Lennon is unlikely to want to keep an unhappy player in the squad.
It is a surprising development considering the Norwegian stated in January that he was happy at Celtic Park but it appears that negotiations over a new deal have broken down, leading to Pedersen to make a public statement about his client’s future.