Transfer deadline day: Maybe not Messi but deals to be had in Scotland

Callum Paterson
Hearts' Callum Paterson has been the subject of interest from Wigan Athletic

Well, here we go again.

Another transfer deadline day where fans across the country will entertain rumours and suggestions that Lionel Messi is about to sign on for their beloved team.

But in reality their clubs are more likely to sign a thirty-something striker who insists he has a point to prove or a young whipper snapper of a midfielder who has been sold on his dream of playing first-team football.

With austerity very much a dominant force in the Scottish game, clubs, with a few exceptions, are more likely to shuffle their pack with loan deals rather than open their cheque books (do they still have them?)

That said Celtic, with millions of pounds about to bolster their bank account from their Champions League exploits, are again likely to spend big.

But there is little chance of any of the cash finding its way to clubs in Scotland as Brendan Rodgers looks beyond this country to bolster his squad.

Searching for the right deal

Prince Buaben
Prince Buaben could leave Hearts on Wednesday

Rangers boss Mark Warburton is also likely to be busy but the Ibrox board are now extremely prudent and their spending will be way short of their Old Firm rivals.

Over in the east, Tynecastle is likely to be one of the busiest places on transfer deadline day with a number of players - Callum Paterson, Prince Buaben and Juwon Oshinawa - potentially heading out at Hearts.

Should any or all of the above leave, it will not be a surprise if director of football Craig Levein and head coach Robbie Neilson act quickly to make sure their dressing room pegs are not lying empty for too long.

Up north, Aberdeen boss Derek McInnes would love to add to his squad, with a move for an experienced midfielder not out of the equation.

Ross County chairman Roy MacGregor is always keen to show his support for his managers and no doubt Jim McIntyre will be seeking out a gem he hopes can be lured to the Highlands.

Inverness Caledonian Thistle boss Richie Foran has been linked with experienced defender Brad McKay after his exit from St Johnstone, with Saints boss Tommy Wright adding Richard Foster to his defensive options earlier in the month.

Brad McKay
McKay has left St Johnstone

The managers of Partick Thistle, Hamilton, Kilmarnock and Motherwell would like to add to their small squads but a lack of cash may dictate that loan deals are the order of the day rather than the recruitment of players on a permanent basis.

Dundee have cash in the bank after the departure earlier this month of Greg Stewart and Kane Hemmings. Manager Paul Hartley still has aspirations of bringing in a defender and a striker.

In the Championship, Hibernian under Neil Lennon have been able to fend off bids for striker Jason Cummings and the Easter Road club have added quality in Brian Graham and Andrew Shinnie, who should both play a major part in their promotion push.

The modest level of spending in Scotland is in stark contrast to the £1bn plus that has been coughed up in England as Premier League clubs splash the cash from their new broadcast deals. Unless there is a drastic change the Scottish leagues will always be the poor relations.

So when midnight chimes the summer window will close and fans around the country will debate if their manager has signed the player or players who will help them achieve their ambitions.

And rumours of sightings of Messi at a motorway service station on the outskirts of Glasgow will be cast aside for another few months.

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