CELTIC are reported to have entered the race to sign talented Hibs midfielder Scott Allan, who was recently voted player of the year by his fellow professionals in the second tier of Scottish football.
This development would be very good news for Hibs who would benefit from the price inflation caused by a bidding contest, and very bad news for The Rangers who have been surviving on crisis loans and handouts as they struggled to finish third in the Championships – despite being burdened by the second highest wage bill in Scottish football.
Should The Rangers overcome Motherwell over the two leg play off final and reach Scotland’s Premiership for the first time in their history, trying to sign Allan would seem to be their priority with a fee of around £500,000 being reported as being the going rate for the 23 year old playmaker who has a year left on his current deal with the Easter Road club.
Celtic monitored the player during his spells at Dundee United, West Brom and indeed Hibs but seemed content to await the January 2016 transfer window and before deciding if he would be worth securing the player on a pre-contract.
It would be a huge blow to The Rangers, who have a dozen or so players reaching the end of their contracts after the match at the weekend at Fir Park. If they fail to overcome Motherwell it is hard to imagine them being in a position to buy Allan – unless they choose to go down the road of their predecessor club who famously purchased player after player on huge wages and for large transfer fees without being in a position to pay. This led to the liquidation of Rangers Fc in 2012 and a new club was subsequently reformed and admitted to the bottom tier of Scottish football.
What adds spice to the Scott Allan story is the reliance The Rangers fans have placed on the player being ‘a Bear’ i.e. a Rangers supporter. Allan may if given the chance, choose to play for the the successor club to his boyhood heroes or alternatively play for the Scottish Champions and sample European football at the highest level.
He may look at Celtic’s club captain Scott Brown who selected Celtic ahead of the old Rangers and has never looked back.
If Celtic do get involved in a bidding war with The Rangers over Scott Allan then the new club could find that their lack of status and financial clout will cost them dearly.