Date: 11th September 2020 at 12:00pm
Written by: Peter Graham

Former Aston Villa manager, Alex McLeish feels that John McGinn could go down in history as the one that got away for Celtic such has been his impact at his former club.

Speaking to Football Insider, McLeish has been hugely impressed with how McGinn has settled into life in the Premier League.

So what has McLeish said?

When asked to reflect on how well the Scotland international has coped with life in English football having been so close to a move to Parkhead, he said:

“John has come on leaps and bounds in a couple of years but the potential was always there at St Mirren, an excellent, robust young midfielder and then he did a great job at Hibs as well.

“There was talk of him going to Celtic but Villa came in with quite a big bid and Hibs would bite their hand off, no doubts they’d bite their hand off for that and John has gone from strength to strength.

“The experience of John playing in that league every game has enhanced not only his gravitas but it enhances his mind and his confidence and you can see that clearly that he’s playing, he comes on the field and he doesn’t fear anybody now.

“He does those fantastic runs into the box, a la the new Lampard, guys like that and there’s been loads of Villa fans [saying] Gareth Barry, I compared him to Gareth earlier last season.

“The way he swashbuckled into the box and got goals for Villa, if John McGinn can do half as good as Gareth then he’ll be a Villa legend.“

So is McLeish correct?

If only Peter Lawwell had paid the fee that Hibs were wanting for McGinn he could still have been playing in green and white and been a key figure in the Celtic engine room.

Who's the better player?

John McGinn

John McGinn

David Turnbull

David Turnbull

A midfield of Callum McGregor, David Turnbull and John McGinn is one that could’ve served the Hoops for years to come and one that is packed with energy and goals without having to break the bank either.

At least the lesson was learned with the signing of Turnbull in that there was no messing about, Motherwell named their price and Lawwell got the cheque book out, making the mistake once can be forgiven, but to have done it again would have been borderline corporate negligence.