Derek McInnes expecting offers for Celtic-linked midfielder

Kilmarnock manager Derek McInnes is expecting interest in Young Player of the Year David Watson. The 19-year-old has been excellent this season as he helped the Ayrshire side to European qualification.

After the Scotland U19 International was confirmed as PFA Scotland Young POTY, McInnes admitted that there would be interest in the talent.

20th August 2023; Rugby Park, Kilmarnock, Scotland: Scottish Viaplay Cup Football, Kilmarnock versus Celtic; David Watson of Kilmarnock tackles Odin Thiago Holm of Celtic

What a story it is.

“A lot of managers speak to me about him, people on the street, supporters from other clubs, they always make reference to David Watson.

“He is a credit to his family, he is their boy, but we feel that he is ours at the club, he has been around the club for so long.

“We were so proud when he picked up his award. We were hopeful but you are never totally confident.

“The fact that he has been nominated by the Scottish Football Writers as well, is fantastic.

“I think we should expect speculation about Davie, we should expect clubs to be more than aware of him, bigger clubs than us. That’s the way it goes. We would be surprised if there wasn’t.

“He has been a fantastic story for us, he is from the academy, a real flagship player for that.

“We have signed a few more players since David has established himself in the team.

“He is a great way for us to try to get boys to sign. We are confident we can keep more younger players at Killie. There’s a couple in who we have high hopes but we would like David to hang about a bit longer.

David Watson of Kilmarnock scores with a header to tie the score 1-1 during time added on after 90 minutes. The goal stood following a VAR check for a foul. Celtic v Kilmarnock, Cinch Scottish Premiership, Football, Celtic Park, Glasgow, UK – 17 Feb 2024. Photo Stuart Wallace/Shutterstock

“As a manager you want to hold on to your best players as long as we can but we understand the market and if there are offers that come in for him, as I would expect, it is something that we would have to look at but we don’t want to lose him. He is a credit to himself.

“He is only going to get better. He was in good company with the nominees and to come out on top is fantastic for him.

“There have been a lot of top players who have won that award and went on to have brilliant careers and he is another one.”

Celtic have been linked with the player as they look to take the brightest Scottish talents to help develop the quality in the first team. Brendan Rodgers trusts McInnes’ coaching abilities and will have been impressed with Watson, who scored an equaliser against his side earlier this year.

Watson is said to be a Celtic supporter and would jump at the opportunity to play for the club. Although, it is importantly that there is a pathway for the club towards regular first team involvement.

If Celtic were to sign him, you’d imagine it would be in the £3-4m bracket as Killie will want to maximise the value in their starlet. If a deal was forthcoming, Celtic should look to offer the player to Killie on loan as a first refusal if the manager believes that his options will be limited.

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.

1 Comment

  1. Rob O’Keeffe on

    C’mon Celtic,sign the best young Scottish players from the opposition and put them on the bench…..#projectsrus..