Rival Scottish Premiership St Johnstone chairman Steve Brown has explained why the club sold two of their top assets on deadline day after one of the players was linked to Rangers.
The Perthshire Saints sold both captain Jason Kerr and talented young midfielder Ali McCann to Wigan Athletic and Preston North End respectively.
🆕 | A message from the Chairman on the transfer window.#SJFC
— St. Johnstone FC (@StJohnstone) September 2, 2021
Kerr, 24, was sold for around £600k whilst McCann will eventually secure a total of £1.75m for the McDiarmid Park club.
Understandably some Saints fans are frustrated with the low fees and the fact two players left on the same day.
However, the club’s chairman has now moved to explain precisely why the players were sold in a lengthy statement on the club’s official website.
In it, Brown explains that Wigan “met our valuation” for Jason Kerr and claimed it “was an offer we could not turn down.”
The club also lauded their former skipper, claiming they “could not stand in his way”, intimating the player wanted to leave for the League One side.
But with McCann the situation is more interesting.
Brown reveals that St Johnstone actually turned two bids down for the midfielder and claimed the club “had no intentions to sell Ali in this window”.
However, following an increased bid from Preston at 5pm on deadline day – and the intimation of significantly higher wages from a Preston point of view – McCann himself pushed for the move.
Rival chairman Brown claims McCann wanted to “challenge himself at a higher level” and suggests the financial package on offer at Deepdale “potentially a once in a lifetime opportunity”.
Reluctantly, the club went back to Preston, secured a “£1.75m” package and let the player go.
This, according to St Johnstone, sends out a message to other players that they “are not a club that will block their development path”.
It’s a refreshing take from Brown but it doesn’t exactly clear up reports which had suggested Rangers were offered McCann on deadline day.
Rincon Escoces claimed that Rangers manager Steven Gerrard and sporting director Ross Wilson turned down a move for McCann due to existing prospects within the squad.