When it comes to Celtic star Ryan Christie, few know more than John Hughes.
Former Hoops defender Yogi gave Christie his first chance as a professional at Inverness Caledonian Thistle – and has watched his growth with a big smile since.
Hughes was delighted to see his protege star for Scotland in Belgrade on Thursday, as the national team ended their 22 year wait for major championship qualification.
Christie has struck two in his last five for Celtic, but he wasn’t always destined for the Hoops as Hughes revealed.
In an exclusive interview with 67 Hail Hail, the former Falkirk and ICT boss told us about some interest in the attacker from down south.
“Celtic got lucky”, he said. “When I was at Inverness, Eddie Howe phoned up from Bournemouth.
“He phoned me up personally and said, ‘I’m just giving you a heads up Yogi, we’ve had great reports about Ryan Christie, can you tell me a bit about him’.
“I said ‘He’s going to go right to the top’.
“He had technical ability but also the attitude to go with it.
“I said ‘Eddie make sure you’re coming in with good money’ but he was a Celtic fan.”
Howe may work with Christie one day
It was funny to hear Yogi mention Eddie Howe of all managers.
The former Bournemouth boss has been linked with a move to manage us, with pressure mounting on Neil Lennon in recent weeks.
It is unclear whether Howe would fancy moving north, but maybe a chance to finally link up with Christie could pay dividends.
Christie seems destined to move down south at some stage over the next few years.
But, having spoken to Hughes, I’m not as convinced as I was that it will be next summer.