By Joe McHugh
Celtic manager Ronny Deila has admitted discussing a move for Aiden McGeady but fears that the wages of the Everton man would smash Celtic's salary structure.
Republic of Ireland midfielder McGeady seems certain to be on the move during the January transfer window as he seeks the first team football needed to challenge for a starting place in Euro 2016.
A return to Celtic, where he came through the youth ranks before being transferred to Spartak Moscow in 2010, has always seemed likely but the wages gap between Scotland and England makes a move less likely.
Under Deila, Celtic's transfer policy has been to recruit younger players on low salaries that can be sold to England with Virgil van Dijk the most recent example.
Over the last decade Celtic have brought in Roy and Robbie Keane during the January transfer window with Deila looking to bring in some experience to help out his younger recruits.
“It has to be players who want to come to Glasgow and play for Celtic – like Carlton Cole," the Celtic boss explained about his transfer policy.
"He went down a lot in salary. We would not be able to pay the salary that the likes of McGeady are on. The difference is so unbelievably big that’s there is no chance. The wage structure would be broken 10 times if we did that!
“When you get someone and then they leave in the summer it becomes a tough situation afterwards. Sometimes you can do it.
“If you feel you can build a relationship with the player during the time he’s on loan then maybe you can keep him longer.
“Maybe with players like McGeady, who has been here before, when he reaches the end of his career he’ll want to come back again.
“That’s possible, of course but I haven’t talked with him about that, although these types of names we are talking about.
“I don’t know what Dermot (Desmond) did before you’d need to talk with him about that but we’d need to have the opportunity to buy him. That’s an important thing for us.”
McGeady is likely to have other Premier League options to consider with Everton looking for a permanent deal rather than a loan.
While a permanent deal would appeal to McGeady a loan move to Celtic would guarantee first team football, the opportunity to play his way back into Martin O'Neill's plans and also put him in the shop window for a move after Euro 2016.