onny Hayes is relishing the prospect of working with Brendan Rodgers again after signing on the dotted line at Celtic .
The 29-year-old was a young starlet making his way in the game at Reading when the current Hoops manager was working with the club’s academy.
And Irish ace Hayes , who is heading to Parkhead on a three-year deal after Aberdeen pocketed a £1.3million fee and secured the services of Ryan Christie on loan for next term, can’t wait to get going under his tutelage.
“Brendan and I go back a long time,” he told the Celtic website. “I worked under him at the academy at Reading but I hadn’t seen him for a few years until the game at Pittodrie earlier in the season. He’s still the same man.
“He’s brilliant to work for and he looks at every little detail. He was a huge factor in wanting to come to Celtic. He’s up there with the best coaches I’ve ever worked for and I’m glad I’ll get to play for him again.”
Irish internationalist Jonny Hayes signs for #CelticFC on a three-year deal. Welcome, Jonny!
— Celtic Football Club (@celticfc) June 17, 2017
Hayes attracted attention after bagging 11 goals for the Dons last term, including two against Celtic in the final month of the season, and won Player of the Year nominations.
He has been a massive success at Pittodrie in his five years after signing from Inverness Caley Thistle and was the only non-Celtic player to feature on the Scottish Professional Footballers’ Association player of the year shortlist.
“Celtic have done well over the last few seasons and with the managercoming in last year he raised the level again,” he said.
“It was hard last year seeing all the celebrations and all the stuff on social media and you want that for yourself and to be part of it.
“Now it’s my chance and hopefully, going forward, I can create my own little bit of history and take the chance I’ve been given.”
Hayes admits the prospect of playing Champions League football was one of the big attractions of moving to the Glasgow giants.
“You can’t get away from the Champions League,” he said.
“I can imagine it is the reason many players have wanted to come here. Not only is it the size and stature of the club, Champions League nights and the atmosphere are a massive factor in wanting to come here.
“Whether you’re a football fan or not, everybody knows about the atmosphere of Champions League nights at Celtic Park. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t want a part of that.”