Paulo Bernardo has truly found his feet with Scottish champions Celtic, and the club’s manager Brendan Rodgers says there is a good chance of making his deal in Glasgow permanent.
Bernardo scored the opening goal in a 5-0 win over Buckie Thistle in the Scottish FA Cup on Sunday, meaning the Portuguese has three goals and two assists from his last four matches for the Hoops.
Speaking after the match, the Benfica loanee said he has yet to speak to Rodgers about his future and is instead concentrating on further improvement. “No [we haven’t spoken about it] he and me just want to keep the things going well and to improve a lot,” Bernard told reporters,
“I am enjoying it a lot. The fans are unbelievable and they like me, so I am feeling good too. I just have to keep going and doing things well.
“I just think about the present, game by game, how I can improve. Then the other things will happen.”
“Scoring goals? It’s my job too. I have to do my best. Happily everything is going well for me, but I want to do more.
“I think I can do better in the second half of the season. I have to improve a lot in my game, so I just have to continue to work hard and everything is going to go well.
Paulo Bernardo is pure class for Celtic pic.twitter.com/Rl1KVB4MOG— Sean Gillen (@SeanGillen9) January 21, 2024
Permanent deal realistic - Rodgers
Rodgers, meanwhile, emphasises the recent improvement of the 21-year-old and believes the terms for a permanent deal are feasible. “I’m delighted with the emergence of Paulo,” Rodgers said. “There is an agreement with the club, an option for us to activate that, if we want to do it.
“He came in and gradually he has learnt the principles of our play. Leading into the Rangers game last month I knew he was going to start and we wanted to give him a run of matches. He’s been fantastic.
“And he has got an old head on young shoulders. He’s a top professional. I can see him emerging and growing now as a person, feeling more confident amongst the players.
“He now has real clarity in how we play and how we work - and you see his game flourishing. He’s been excellent and I expect him to get better.
“We’ll assess it. I’ll sit down with him at some point towards the end of the season and take it from there. Do we know the fee involved? Yeah.
“But clearly the player would have to agree as well, it’s a two-way situation. But I can see Paulo is really enjoying his time here.
“He is improving and developing. Is the fee realistic? I’m not going to say what it is but, absolutely, otherwise it wouldn’t be in place.”