Photo by Robbie Jay Barratt – AMA/Getty Images

Aberdeeen made a big mistake when they refused a £7 million bid from Aston Villa for Scott McKenna in the summer of 2018, Dons legend John McMaster has told the Daily Record.

The numbers speak for themselves.

Back in 2018, McKenna looked like one of the most promising young centre-halves not just north of the border but in the whole of Britain.

And, after snapping up another fresh-faced Scot by the name of John McGinn, Villa returned to the Premiership in an attempt to sign Aberdeen’s in-demand defender too.

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But, two years after rejecting a £7 million offer from the Midland giants, McKenna is now heading to England for around half that fee.

Nottingham Forest will pay just £3 million for a man whose career has stalled during a difficult couple of seasons at Pittodrie (Record).

“Aberdeen missed the boat with McKenna when they kicked two offers from Villa into touch. Two years is a long time in football and by Scott’s standards he had a bad season last year,” says McMaster, now a scout at Cardiff City.

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“He was outstanding during that 2017/18 campaign and I recommended him to Swansea where I was working as their Scottish scout.

“When Aberdeen were offered the £7m from Villa, they should have grabbed it. At the time I remember thinking it was nuts to knock it back.”

McMaster is confident, however, that McKenna can get back on the right track at Nottingham Forest, highlighting the impressive attitude and fine passing range of a man who captained Scotland on just his fourth international appearance.

Struggling Forest have lost their first two Championship games this season, conceding four goals in the process, with Joe Worrall and Tobias Figueredo hardly covering themselves in glory at centre-half.

The Record adds that McKenna will sign a four-year deal at the City Ground.

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Nottingham Forest’s last five Championship finishing positions

  1. 7th place: 2019/20

    70 points

  2. 9th place: 2018/19

    66 points

  3. 17th place: 2017/18

    46 points

  4. 21st place: 2016/17

    51 points

  5. 16th place: 2015/16

    55 points

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