Blow for Celtic as Mark McKenzie set to seal Belgian move

Celtic target Mark McKenzie looks set to seal a move to KRC Genk from Philadelphia Union this January. The fee is believed to be more than the $4m dollar deal that Celtic proposed in the summer but The Inquirer is claiming that Genk have agreed a deal with the MLS side to bring the youngster in.

McKenzie spoke about Celtic in a recent interview with Sky Sports’ Anthony Joseph, even discussing the progress of Virgil Van Dijk. Although, it looks like Celtic have missed out on one of their targets – who looks like he will be moving to the Belgian league in January.

“I’ve done my fair share of research and I’ve always loved football so I’ve known about Celtic for a while.

“You hear about Celtic and the path of Virgil Van Dijk – going from there to the Prem. I’m no dummy when it comes to understanding the leagues. I have a general idea of what the leagues look like and keeping up with who is at the front of the pack in the league race and tournaments.

“I know about Celtic and the league – and a lot of other leagues. But it’s an exciting time, though.”

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At just 21-years-old, Celtic appeared to be a  promising option for both parties offering him a platform to play in Europe and compete for trophies but he appears to be on the cusp of a move to KRC Genk. Celtic could have upped the bid in the summer but opted to go for Shane Duffy on a season-long loan deal from Brighton.

It could be a major blow for the club, who have used the MLS market to sign some players in the past. Celtic have previously signed two promising MLS starlets – Manny Perez and Andrew Gutman with the pair yet to feature. The MLS is becoming an emerging talent pool for Scottish clubs as they use their locality to South America to pick up promising talents. Homegrown talent like McKenzie are showcased in matches with certain quotas needing fulfilled of local players, allowing them to use their platform for a move to a bigger league.

Whilst there is yet to be any official confirmation, it looks as if Celtic have missed out on a highly promising young player. Genk have history developing players with ties to Belgian stars Lukaku, De Bruyne and Courtouis.

About Author

Born just as Celtic were stopping the Ten, Lubo98 follows Celtic home and away and helps run his local Celtic Supporters Club. He goes to all the games and is a Law Graduate. Has a particular fondness for Tom Rogic among the current Celts and both Lubo and Henrik form his earliest Celtic memories.

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