Celtic and Aston Villa target returns to training at Aberdeen


Aberdeen defender Scott McKenna has handed the Dons a huge boost after returning to full training.

The highly-rated Scotland centre-half was ruled out for up to six weeks after sustaining a hamstring injury in the 1-1 Premiership opener with Rangers on August 5 and has so far missed four domestic and two international outings.

The Pittodrie outfit rejected a £7 million bid from English Championship club Aston Villa for the 21-year-old, who has also been the subject of interest from Celtic, on transfer deadline day last month.

Aberdeen manager Derek McInnes has claimed the defender is destined for the top-flight south of the border and is thrilled the player is on the verge of a first team return.

McInnes said: “It’s brilliant news for us, he’s such an important player for us as we all know – so it’s great to have him back.”

McInnes has not had his injury problems to seek, with several players still sidelined.

On loan Watford defender Tommie Hoban will undergo surgery to correct a shoulder problem he sustained in the August 25 stalemate at Hibs, while winger Scott Wright is recovering from an ankle complaint.

Defender Mark Reynolds is hoping to return before the end of the year after being sidelined with knee cruciate ligament damage.

However, on loan Manchester United forward James Wilson could feature in Saturday’s clash at St Johnstone after missing the recent loss to Kilmarnock with a hamstring strain.

McInnes said: “James Wilson is the one we’re hoping we can get back for the weekend. He’s doing work with the physio again and it’s about that process of making sure that before he comes back into full training that the hamstring is as it should be.

“We’re keen to get him with us as quickly as possible, but mindful we want to make sure the injury is cleared up because what we don’t want is that to break down again.

“On the other side of it, we’ve got a couple of injuries still to contend with. Tommie Hoban will go in for surgery next week for his shoulder, Scott Wright and Mark Reynolds are still out along with Greg Tansey.

“Frank Ross got sent back from the Scotland Under-21s with a back complaint, with a bit of spasm, so we’re trying to get to the bottom of that in the next day or two.

“Hopefully he’ll be ok for the weekend.”