Aberdeen – Tommie Hoban
It’s no insult to Aberdeen to wonder whether they’d have been able to bring a defender of Hoban’s quality back to the club if it weren’t for his alarming injury history. Derek McInnes put trust in the 26-year-old getting himself fit and has been repaid with a string of impressive performances. Hoban extended his initial short-term contract in October until the end of the season and the Dons will have a fight on their hands if they want a player with English Championship pedigree to hang around any longer.
Celtic – Conor Hazard
Scott Brown is also on an expiring contract but let’s assume it’s only a matter of time before the club legend signs a new deal. Hazard has been Neil Lennon’s preference between the sticks for the reigning champions as they’ve won their last five games, looking largely assured as he’s played ahead of Scott Bain and Vasilis Barkas. Celtic will have an eye on improving at the goalkeeper position in the near future, but they’ll also want to keep a 22-year-old with plenty of potential.
Dundee United – Nicky Clark
Though it’s unsure whether Clark deserves a spot in United’s strongest XI, given the presence of Scottish internationals Lawrence Shankland and Marc McNulty, but there is no doubt the former Rangers man has been a key member of the Tannadice squad this campaign, leading the team in scoring with 10 goals in 21 matches. At 29 and in his maiden top-flight season, if United want to keep him around it’s likely he’ll stay.
Hamilton Accies – Hakeem Odoffin
Signing a back-up right-back from Livingston didn’t make a lot of waves in Hamilton last summer, but Odoffin has proven himself an excellent squad player capable of filling in competently at centre-back and centre-midfield. At just 22 years of age, it’s hard to imagine he isn’t on the radar of richer Scottish Premiership sides.
Hibs – Joe Newell
The Englishman has been transformed from an out-of-sorts winger to a Rolls Royce of a centre-midfielder across the course of Jack Ross’ tenure at Easter Road. Contract talks appear to have stalled after initial discussions in November and it’s likely the 27-year-old will look to see if there’s interest from down south and a potential one last big payday before he moves into the twilight years of his career.
Kilmarnock – Eamonn Brophy
The Rugby Park side have an astonishing number of players who are in the last six months of their deal; we could have focused on just about any member of the first-team. Instead we’ve plumped for Brophy, who is suffering through his toughest season since signing for Killie from Hamilton Accies in 2017. He’s scored just three times and has often started from the bench. For someone who was in the Scotland squad no too long ago, there is plenty to consider when January arrives.
Livingston – Jon Guthrie
The centre-back didn’t quite live up to the expectations set by his performances last season in the early part of this campaign, but he’s returned to his previous stellar form in recent weeks as Livingston have gone on a tear under David Martindale. A no-nonsense defender who is a real threat in the opposition box, Guthrie will likely be on the radar of several clubs, both in Scotland and England, and the Lions would do very well to convince him to extend his stay.
Motherwell – Allan Campbell
One of the few bright spots from what’s been a rough campaign for the Lanarkshire club, Campbell is expected to depart Fir Park at some point in the near future, be it a pre-contract or a permanent move in the January window. The young centre-midfielder is as all-action as they come; a real imposing force capable of halting opponents and driving his team forward. Hibs have been credited with serious interest.
Rangers – Steven Davis
The Ibrox side will have already begun planning for the future at the defensive midfield position, but there’s been very little indication that there’s any pressing need to move on from the veteran Northern Irish international. He’s been a picture of consistency in front of the back four, constantly running matches from midfield with his vision and range of passing.
Ross County – Ross Stewart
Another who seems fairly likely to depart for next summer, though someone who hasn’t lived up to his talismanic status with his current team this term. There’s no doubting the quality of the former Kilwinning Rangers forward, but two league goals (and none since August) among a bundle of chances missed just hasn’t been good enough. It’s unlikely to put off many admirers, however, as they can easily point to County’s dreadful form overall as a justifiable excuse.
St Johnstone – Stevie May
The former Scottish international has scored 10 goals this season, the first time he has managed that since his breakout campaign in the 2013/14 made him an instantly recognisable star. It seems he and Saints were made for each other and it’s easy enough to route for the two parties to come to an agreement over a new deal. Having rebuilt his confidence in front of goal, it will be interesting to see whether May would like another crack at English football, though.
St Mirren – Jake Doyle-Hayes
Buddies boss Jim Goodwin is desperate to get the midfielder signed up to a new contract and it’s easy to see why. The Paisley club haven’t lost a game with him in the starting XI as his combativeness and assurance on the ball have taken his new team’s play up a level. At 21 years old he has a promising future and St Mirren are wary of keeping him under wraps until they can get him tied down to an improved deal.