Jonny Hayes is set to cap what has been a memorable 15 months for him on a personal level by completing a dream move to Brendan Rodgers’ Celtic in the coming days.
The Irish international is currently on duty with Martin O’Neill’s side as they look to take another huge step towards World Cup qualification with a match against Austria this weekend, but once he returns to Aberdeen from that, he may be switching clubs almost immediately.
The rumours flared up several days ago as Sky Sports reported that a deal was close to being agreed between Aberdeen and Celtic for the 29-year-old, though the fact that he has been away with Ireland has been holding the deal up.
On Monday, however, it was reported by Sky that Cardiff City had entered the fray with a £1.2m bid of their own for the former Inverness midfielder.
— Sky Sports Scotland (@ScotlandSky) June 5, 2017
However, while this is Cardiff’s third attempt to sign Hayes since January, the lure of Celtic Park and the potential for silverware and playing in the Champions League would surely be too much to turn down.
Hayes himself is quoted in the past 24 hours as being flattered by Celtic’s interested, and seemed prepared to consider any move that may be forthcoming.7
We’ve obviously known about it (Celtic’s interest) for a while now,” remarked Hayes.
“There have been a few things developing with the club.
“But I just wanted to finish the season with Aberdeen and sign a new deal there in January. I was just concentrating on that.
“Whatever happens over the summer will happen. But I’m here now to enjoy being here for the next week or so. Then I’ll go straight to Disneyland with my family and then we’ll take it from there.
“[Being linked with Celtic] means you are doing something right,
“Managers and players at all levels, if somebody else is taking a look or is taking an interest, it means you are doing something right. You can take it as a compliment. As far as I’m aware I am still an Aberdeen player.
“I enjoy it there – it’s an old cliche but we’ll wait and see what happens.”
In the meantime, although Hayes started in Ireland’s impressive 3-1 win against Uruguay last weekend, he is expected to be on the bench once again for next Sunday’s match in Dublin.