Why McGinn in and Kouassi out could be a strong statement of intent from Celtic
McGinn, 23, started his youth career at St. Mirren before moving to Hibernian in 2015. The central midfielder was hugely impressive in 2017/18 and earned a breakthrough in the Scottish national team.
However, it appears as if McGinn’s future lies at Parkhead. And, with just a year left on his contract, he will be a free agent next summer but Celtic must not wait until then and go all out to sign him in this transfer window.
Celtic skipper Scott Brown is going strong despite turning 33 last month. But Brendan Rodgers must think of a long-term replacement for Brown now that the former Scotland international will enter the twilight of his career. McGinn can be Brown’s ideal replacement at the club.
A boyhood Celtic fan, McGinn would add undoubted quality to Rodgers’ midfield. McGinn would add the kind of steel and grit to Celtic’s midfield that looks a bit thin following the departure of Stuart Armstrong to Southampton this summer.
Having secured a solid fee for Armstrong, especially given he had only 12 months on his contract, Rodgers has the money to spend on a player of similar quality and McGinn fits the bill perfectly.
McGinn is a classic No.8, offering both feistiness and artistry in midfield that has made Neil Lennon’s Hibs successful in the Scottish Premier League. He can do the donkey work as well as provide creativity to open up the toughest of defences in the league.
The 23-year-old has the energy to cover the ground well, which could offer Celtic some much-needed dynamism and energy. With Brown not getting any younger, McGinn could be the exact player to take the baton from the ageing Celtic skipper.
Playing alongside better players, with better facilities and coaching, could enhance McGinn’s game further and he could truly unlock his potential under the watchful eyes of Rodgers.
An all-action midfielder, the Bhoys must continue to push for the midfielder’s signature this summer and should not wait until next year to get him for free.
Seeing Celtic’s high interest in pursuing a deal for McGinn, it would be better if Eboue Kouassi seeks an exit from Parkhead.
He joined Celtic from FC Krasnodar in January 2017 but has struggled badly to make an impact, making just 17 appearances in all competitions till date. The Ivorian has played a bit-part role in Celtic’s three Champions League qualifiers so far this month.
Keeping one eye on McGinn’s situation, Kouassi must make a move away from Celtic this summer to reboot his career. And Rodgers, who was reportedly ready to sell Kouassi in June, must not stand in the player’s way now if he wishes to end his short Celtic career.