Celtic boss Brendan Rodgers says losing Dorus de Vries from Swansea City was as painful as seeing Luis Suarez join Barcelona from Liverpool.
The 35-year-old goalkeeper signed a two-year deal with Celtic this week to rejoin Rodgers, with whom he won promotion to the Premier League in 2011 before signing for Wolves on a free transfer.
Rodgers is delighted to have reunited with the Dutchman, admitting that his Swansea departure was as difficult to accept as Suarez’s £75million move to Barcelona two years ago.
“I’ve been really, really disappointed twice in my career when I’ve lost players,” said Rodgers, who was sacked by Liverpool last October. “One was Luis Suarez at Liverpool and the first was Dorus on a free when he left Swansea, because he was such a key part of how I worked there.
“For people that have seen him play for me at Swansea, it’s pretty clear [what I like about De Vries]. For me, I need to have a goalkeeper that knows that when we are in possession of the ball that we have 11 players.
“He can distribute the ball, he can pass the ball and Dorus is as good as I’ve seen at that on my travels.”
Celtic host Hapoel Be’er Sheva in the first leg of their Champions League play-off tie on Wednesday.