The unlikely Scott McKenna rumour, Timothy Castagne? Patience required

THE rumour that was doing the rounds last night was Celtic signing Scott McKenna from Aberdeen for £4.5million with Jonny Hayes returning to Aberdeen as part of the deal and Derek McInnes also taking Jack Hendry on loan.

While you can never totally dismiss these type of stories it’s also worth noting that the word over in Dubai is that any Celtic interest in McKenna has diminished in recent weeks.

If McInnes, who looks like losing his best player Gary Mackay Steven to New York City in the summer, took Hayes and Hendry then there is a lot to be said for that happening. Hayes was easily Aberdeen’s star man for a number of years and perhaps would enjoy his football a little more in the North East.

Hendry isn’t likely to ever make it at Celtic but would be a decent enough central defender in just about any other team in the Scottish Premiership and if he is to be loaned out, as is Brendan’s intention, surely we should try to keep him in our league rather than send him to somewhere like Bradford?

McKenna it seems is destined for a move to England but hopefully he sticks around at Aberdeen for the rest of this season. He seems to do well playing against you know who!

Brendan has been speaking in Dubai about the likely outcome of the rest of the transfer window and anyone thinking that there is going to be some big money marquee signings is going to be disappointed.

So far in what was regarded as the most crucial transfer window of his time at Celtic, Rodgers has been able to spend just over £2m on Ivory Coast striker Vakoun Issouf Bayo as well as picking up Oliver Burke and Timothy Weah on six month loan deals.

The American college fullback Andrew Gutman has also joined Celtic, subject to the usual work permit formalities. As he was certain to be given this had he opted for Ibrox rather than Celtic Park, this shouldn’t be an issue.

That expenditure of transfer fees remains lower than the Executive ‘Fat Cat’ Bonus of £2.3million that the club paid to Peter Lawwell on Hogmanay.

To be fair, Celtic have tried to sign Timothy Castagne, but neither Atalanta nor the player himself have been particularly keen to do business with the Scottish Champions, at least this early in the window.

If nothing else emerges, this is the type of deal that could go through on the last day of the window.

It’s very much the same story in Greece where both Omar Elabdellaoui and his club Olympiakos haven’t made particularly positive noises about Celtic’s interest. The player is happy in Greece and the club have effectively doubled his transfer value over night amid reports of Celtic interest.

We all know that Lawwell won’t be through that much cash in their direction anytime soon.

Rodgers was asked if any crowd-pleasing marquee signings were likely to arrive in this window, and he dismissed the concept – saying that’s not what Celtic is about.

“I don’t think that’s how Celtic works,” Brendan said to the media.

“The model of the club is value and maximising that value and talent and development and seeing it grow at the club.

“The young players that have come in fit that model. My job was to develop that, increase that talent within and hopefully they can come in and do a great job for Celtic. Whether they are loan signings or a permanent signing.”

This however doesn’t mean that there will be no new faces between now and the end of the month. As mentioned above, a right back is a priority target with Mikael Lustig still waiting news on whether Celtic will take up their one year contract option on his existing deal.

If they don’t the World Cup star will return to Sweden in the summer with AIK Stockholm anxious to secure his services.

“I think there are still positions where we would like to get folk in,” Brendan noted.

“But we needed to improve the squad, there was no doubt about that. The second part of the season is about bringing in more offensive threats and giving us more options.

“In the first part of the season you could see that we were not ideal, having to play players out of position and what not.

“That has just been unfortunate, really. But bringing these guys in really supports the players already there and, once we get the injured players back as well, that gives us something to look forward to.”

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About Author

The Celtic Star founder and editor David Faulds has edited numerous Celtic books over the past decade or so including several from Lisbon Lions, Willie Wallace, Tommy Gemmell and Jim Craig. Earliest Celtic memories include a win over East Fife at Celtic Park and the 4-1 League Cup loss to Partick Thistle as a 6 year old. Best game? Easy 4-2, 1979 when Ten Men Won the League. Email

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