Reported Celtic target Mark McKenzie last night bossed Inter Miami debut-man Gonzalo Higuain before receiving yet further praise from his manager.
Sky Sports reported earlier this month that the Hoops were tracking developments on McKenzie. However, he certainly hasn’t been keeping quiet with a host of commanding performances that have seen him lose just two MLS games in 10 with Philadelphia Union.
Last night, he was at it again as all of the pre-match build-up focused on ex-Real Madrid and Juventus superstar Higuain. Making his debut for David Beckham’s star-studded (and somehow Lewis Morgan’s) Inter Miami, it was expected that he would make his mark.
However, once again, McKenzie stood up to the task to keep the Union’s 100% home record in tact. Just a week after dominating Thierry Henry’s Montreal Impact, he was at it again last night.
Stat-tracking website WhoScored highlighted just how busy a night McKenzie had. Making three successful challenges as well as one vital interception, he more than played his part. That’s not including his four clearances and his ability to go through another game without conceding a foul.
It’s also worth mentioning that Higuain only managed 47 touches throughout the game – the lowest of any of the Miami outfield players who played the full match.
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He was extremely well marshalled by McKenzie and his brilliant centre-back partner Jakob Glesnes. And it makes it all the more impressive given how much anticipation there was surrounding Higuain heading into the game.
Philadelphia manager Jim Curtin was also ecsatic with his centre-backs’ performances too post-match. As quoted by the Philadelphia Inquirer, Curin said: “Our center backs continue to dominate. I can’t say enough about Glesnes and McKenzie. They have a good thing going. I’m really happy with how they’ve been playing.”
It’s yet another sign that McKenzie is ready to make the step up to European football once again. Why Celtic haven’t moved in on this one yet is anyone’s guess, and it doesn’t look likely that we will.
At 67HailHail, we love to keep tabs on some of our exciting reported transfer targets. McKenzie is arguably the most exciting player we’ve been linked with this summer. Yet it looks as though Celtic are currently happy with what they’ve got.
But you can’t help but continually look at the USA international and think he’s a real solid investment if we take the punt. As of yet, there are no signs of that happening.