CELTIC IN MIDFIELDER TALKS

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CELTIC are in talks with Hibs to allow frozen-out midfielder Scott Allan to quit Parkhead this month.

The player, who has failed to make a solitary first team appearance for the Hoops this season, has agreed a three-year pre-contract with the Easter Road side which will kick in when his current deal expires in June, as CQN reported yesterday.

However, negotiations are taking place between the clubs for the 27-year-old playmaker to make the switch before the end of the transfer window on January 31.

Neil Lennon believes Allan, who is heading for his third spell at the Edinburgh outfit, is desperate to start playing for his team straight away rather than wait until the start of the next campaign.

The former Celtic boss said: “I’m thrilled, it’s a real coup for us, a player the fans love and he had such a big impact here last year and in his previous term under Alan Stubbs.

“We’re hoping something can get done before the window shuts. If not, we look forward to welcoming him in the summer.

“But he’ll be itching to play. He’s a footballer and there’s nothing worse than being fit and not playing, seeing your weekends pass by and looking at results and games.

“I’m not involved in the financial negotiations and I’ve not spoken to Scotty about it, but I’m sure he would want to get out and play like all players would. Scott would fit in straight away with whatever formation we want to play.”

Lennon admitted he was a little surprised at Allan’s lack of action at his old club, but added: “There’s a lot of competition there. Like Efe Ambrose and other players like that, it’s no disgrace not to play regularly at Celtic with the competition and quality that’s there.

“He’s still a very good player at this level, he’s exciting to watch at times and imaginative. He sees things quicker than others and executes them pretty well. He’s the type of player we’ve missed in the first half of the season.”

Allan was named Championship Player of the Year after one season with Hibs before moving to Celtic in a £300,000 deal in the summer of 2015. However, he failed to force his way into Brendan Rodgers’ plans, starting just three matches and being farmed out on loan to Rotherham, Dundee and back to Hibs.

The midfield man has made just 106 starts in a career which has taken him from Dundee United to West Brom and on to loan spells with Portsmouth, MK Dons and Birmingham City.

* DON’T miss the unbeatable match report from tonight’s Celtic v Airdrie Cup clash – only in your champion CQN.

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