Celtic target John McGinn 'not mentally fit' to play for Hibernian, says Neil Lennon
Midfielder missed 6-1 win against NSI Runavik in Europa League first qualifying round
By Joe Shread
Last Updated: 12/07/18 11:27pm
Neil Lennon says midfielder John McGinn was "not mentally fit" to play for Hibernian on Thursday after having his head turned by interest from Celtic.
Hibs began their Europa League qualification campaign with a 6-1 thrashing of NSI Runavik of the Faroe Islands at Easter Road, but McGinn was not in the squad.
His absence came amid interest from Celtic, who Sky sources understand have had bids of £1.5m and £1.75m for McGinn rejected.
Following his side's win, Lennon said McGinn was carrying an injury, but also confirmed he was not in the right frame of mind to take to the field.
He said: "His thigh was heavily strapped yesterday. I know there will be a lot of conspiracy theories flying about, which is fine, but I am in control of this.
"I had a chat with John and it puffed up a bit last night and he slept on it. He wasn't 100 per cent, and he is not 100 per cent mentally either, and if John is to go I need to look at what else I have got.
"But if he is fit to play next week, which he should be by Sunday or Monday, he will start."
Despite having successive bids for the 23-year-old turned down, Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers refused to rule out returning with a third offer.
When asked about McGinn, he said: "We respect John is still very much a Hibs player and unless there's an agreement...like I say, it's going to be a difficult one. That's really between the clubs."