St Johnstone boss Tommy Wright sends Hearts and Aberdeen transfer message

Tommy Wright has spoken on interest in Matty Kennedy. Picture: SNS
Tommy Wright has spoken on interest in Matty Kennedy. Picture: SNS
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Hearts and Aberdeen have been linked with a move for St Johnstone attacker Matty Kennedy

St Johnstone boss Tommy Wright has warned teams keen on Matty Kennedy that the player is likely to remain in Perth for the remainder of the season.

Kennedy is a huge player for St Johnstone. Picture: SNS

Kennedy is a huge player for St Johnstone. Picture: SNS

The Northern Irishman confirmed strong interest from both Aberdeen and Hearts, with the latter reportedly hoping to bring him in this month.

The player is contracted until the end of the campaign with Derek McInnes eyeing a pre-contract deal.

"Aberdeen are probably close to agreeing a pre-contract with him. Hearts made contact yesterday and I want him to stay," Wright told BBC Scotland.

"There are three scenarios at the moment. I want him to remain here until the end of the season and I can't see that being a problem.

"I don't think it's in our interest to let him go now. It's important we stay in the league and it's important that we hold on to our best players.

"We are a well run club, we don't need to sell. The only way that would happen is if everything was 100% what St Johnstone needed."

Dangerous attacker

Kennedy, who came through the youth system at Kilmarnock, has found his feet after his career stuttered following a move to Everton when he was 17-year-old.

The 24-year-old had three loan spells while at Goodison Park, including a season with Hibs during their time in the Championship. A move to Cardiff City followed but that brought about another three loan spells.

Since signing for St Johnstone in the summer of 2018, Kennedy has developed into a key player for the Perth side and one of the most dangerous attackers in the league. He can play in a number of attacking positions behind the forward or as a second striker. He has netted three times for Saints in the league this season, with a further three assists.

Kennedy is a front-foot player. No player has attempted more dribbles in the league, he has recorded the fourth-most crosses and set up 14 chances for team-mates, which is the third-most in the Premiership.