Evening Express

Aberdeen boss McInnes hoping to persuade Shinnie to extend contract again

Derek McInnes with Graeme Shinnie

Dons boss Derek McInnes today confirmed securing skipper Graeme Shinnie on a new deal is a priority for the club.

Scotland international Shinnie’s Dons contract expires at the end of the season.

Talks with the 27-year-old midfielder are on-going.

With his deal up next summer, Shinnie would be available to talk to any interested clubs when the winter transfer window opens on January 1.

Boss McInnes recently completed the loan signing of Manchester United striker James Wilson, 22, on a year-long deal.

Now his focus is on securing the long-term Pittodrie future of his inspirational captain.

McInnes said: “It is a priority as a club to try to get Graeme signed.

“Hopefully Graeme sees it that way as well.

“It is on-going although obviously we had been busy with the European games recently.”

Championship side Bristol City were understood to be monitoring Shinnie with the view to a potential move during the summer window. That cannot happen now as the transfer window in England for signing players closed last Thursday.

Aberdonian Shinnie made his Scotland debut when coming on as a substitute in a 2-0 loss away to Peru in a friendly this summer.

The versatile midfielder/ left-back then started for the Scots in the 1-0 defeat to Mexico at the Azcteca stadium a few days later.

Shinnie arrived at Pittodrie in summer 2015 on a three-year deal straight after leading Inverness Caley Thistle to Scottish Cup glory as captain.

He signed a three-year contract until summer 2018.

McInnes has already persuaded Shinnie to sign a new contract as he penned a one-year extension until 2019 in January last year.

He hopes Shinnie does the same again.

Shinnie underlined his versatility at the weekend by dropping from midfield into the left-back role in the 1-0 win at Dundee as the Dons were hit by a defensive crisis.

McInnes had four senior defenders sidelined through injury or suspension.

Right-back Shaleum Logan was suspended and will also miss out on Saturday’s League Cup clash with St Mirren at Pittodrie.

On-loan Watford defender Tommie Hoban is out with a knee injury and Scotland international centre-back Scott McKenna is sidelined for six weeks with a hamstring tear sustained in the 1-1 Premiership season opener against Rangers.

Centre-back Mark Reynolds is out for the next six months having undergone knee surgery.

McInnes said: “Given all our injury problems, defensively especially, to go away from home and get a clean sheet was brilliant.

“I was really pleased with that side of it as we defended well at Dundee.”

McInnes had initially targeted signing a defender to provide cover but accepts the need for that is not so urgent now.

He said: “Shay has one more game to miss and then he will be back for HIbs.

“Hopefully Tommie Hoban will be back in two or three weeks and Scott will be back after the international break.

“So defensively we will not be too bad then and in a few weeks’ time that will be healthier.

“And plus there are restrictions – you can’t always go and get another player.”