Philadelphia boss confirms there are no offers for reported Celtic target Mark McKenzie

By David Walton

December 3, 2020

Philadelphia Union manager Jim Curtin has confirmed that there is currently “nothing on the table” regarding offers for Celtic-linked Mark McKenzie.

McKenzie was linked heavily with a move to Celtic in the summer. Sky reporter Anthony Joseph reported after the window had closed that the Hoops were still tracking the Union star.

This was fuelled further earlier in the week when Sports Illustrated journalist Kristian Dyer tweeted that Celtic had seen a £2.2million ($3m) offer turned down for the USA international back in October.

And with the MLS season now over for Philadelphia, Curtin was asked about rumours regarding his top players. And despite confirming there was nothing concrete as of yet, he left the door open for any interested parties to come forward.

As quoted by the official MLS website, Curtin said: “Look, at this moment there is nothing on the table. But we are not blind, we can’t wait until something comes, we’ll do our homework and always look for replacements.

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“With transfers, it’s not that easy. You have three parties you need to agree, but we will do something. You can be sure. We’ll do something in almost every part of the roster. There’s more to come.”

Lennon’s Wednesday admission makes McKenzie deal a possibility

This is a promising development in any chase for McKenzie. With Celtic having reportedly made an offer back in October that was rebuffed, it seems as though there could very well be an interest there given the wealth of different sources who have reported our apparent keenness.

The official MLS website also acknowledged McKenzie’s links with Celtic, whilst the player has been asked about it in the past too. Given Neil Lennon yesterday outlined that he wants to add some quality in the door in the new year (Scottish Sun), this move look like a goer.

In terms of what Philadelphia would take for McKenzie, it’s difficult to put a price tag on it. In the summer, the Daily Record reported that he was rated as a £1m asset. But since then, he’s been called up again by the USA national team, secured the runner-up spot for MLS Defender of the Year, and helped win the Union their first-ever MLS Supporters’ Shield.

Phialdelphia Union manager Jim Curtin (Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images)

His value will have gone up tenfold, yet even so it’s not as if top players from the MLS tend to be sold for ridiculous sums of money. So there are certainly some discussions to be had here.

In any case, this is a position that should’ve been sorted. The arrival of Shane Duffy was supposed to have sorted out all of our defensive woes, but it’s done anything but. We haven’t had a settled back-line all season, with all six centre-back options at the club having featured there at some stage.

Adding McKenzie to the mix could come across to some as just adding to the fat. But with Philadelphia clearly happy to play ball on this one, the door has been opened for Celtic to make their move.

In other news, Lennon has touched on the club’s winter plans that lead to a dispute between the SPFL and a rival Premiership club.