Exclusive – Celtic are expecting to miss out on a hefty sum of money this summer because of a clause allowing Belgian side KV Oostende to sign defender Jack Hendry permanently.
After struggling to make the breakthrough at Celtic, Hendry was loaned out to Oostende last summer where he has enjoyed a fantastic campaign in the Pro League, helping a side who were fighting relegation last year climb their way up to a battle for a European spot this time around.
Sources have confirmed to 90min that Oostende are keen to take up their option to buy Hendry permanently, which is understood to sit below the £2m mark, which will then give them a chance to earn a quick profit.
Oostende are well aware of the interest Hendry is generating in England. 90min previously reported that Aston Villa, Brighton and Wolves were all keen, while Burnley failed with a January bid for Hendry, but Hendry’s performances have attracted more suitors in recent weeks.
There has since been scouts from Leicester, West Ham, Crystal Palace and Newcastle keeping an eye on Hendry, and Oostende feel they may be able to sell Hendry on to one of the English sides for a fee of around £10m – money Celtic would not see.
There is a big chance to Hendry will end up in England next season, although the defender has not ruled out the idea of returning to Celtic, where there could be a handful of changes to the playing squad after watching Rangers romp to their 55th league title.
Hendry’s profile could grow even further this summer as he is in contention to return to the Scotland squad for the first time in three years when Steve Clarke picks his side for this summer’s European Championships.
Clubs in Germany and the Netherlands have already registered their interest in Hendry, and a positive showing this summer may attract even more potential buyers.
Oostende understand the situation and can smell the chance to make a quick profit at Celtic’s expense.
In an ideal world, they would prefer to sign Hendry and keep him around their squad, but there is an acceptance that the interest in the defender could make that impossible, so they are open to the idea of cashing in immediately.