Speaking to BT Sport this past weekend, Hibernian manager Neil Lennon has placed a hefty price tag on long-term Celtic target John McGinn.
McGinn has emerged as one of the most exciting Scottish midfield talents in recent years, shining for Hibs and winning international caps for Gordon Strachan’s national side.
The Daily Express reported at the end of last month that Celtic and Ipswich Twon were interested in his signature, even suggesting that the Hoops see him as a long-term successor to club captain Scott Brown.
However if the Hoops want him, they’ll need to pay a pretty penny according to Hibs boss Neil Lennon.
Speaking candidly to BT Sport, Lennon said of his situation:
I can’t guarantee it but he’s not for sale. It’s going to take a huge bid from any club to take John away from us, £4-5 million. He’s still got a bit to do but already he is a quality player. He’s a Scottish international.
Does that put the 22-year-old out of Celtic’s price range or will they be tempted to secure his services?
There’s no doubting that McGinn possesses great ability for his age but he still has a lot to prove, even by Scottish football standards. While he’s really gained prominence at Hibs, he’s yet to feature for them in the top-flight, with the Edinburgh side only being promoted from the Championship last term.
While he did also perform well for St Mirren in the Scottish Premiership before his move to Easter Road, did he do enough to justify such a price tag?
Celtic fans will remember that the club also had to shell out big money for Scott Brown when he signed for the club ten years ago, so it’s not unprecedented for the Hoops to pay decent money when they feel they have a future star on their hands.
Another full season in the Scottish top-flight with Hibs, now he’s had a few years more development since his time in Paisley, will go a long way to determining his true potential.
However, the Hoops shouldn’t sleep on signing him if they sense they could be beaten to his signature by a team in England.