Aberdeen’s greatest scorer Joe Harper today hailed Sam Cosgrove for knocking back a multi-million-pound move to France.
The Dons accepted a significant offer from French second-tier side Guingamp, understood to be £2.7 million.
However, Cosgrove knocked back an Aberdeen record transfer because he has unfinished business at Pittodrie.
The big striker netted 23 goals last season, including six in the Europa League.
Harper believes Cosgrove, contracted until summer 2022, has shown admirable loyalty to the Dons.
Aberdeen’s top scorer of all time, Harper also reckons the Reds can pocket even more for Cosgrove if his red-hot form continues.
Harper said: “You have to admire Sam Cosgrove’s loyalty for knocking back Guingamp because he has unfinished business at Aberdeen.
“After scoring 23 goals last season, he was always going to attract attention during the summer transfer window.
“It is understandable that Aberdeen accepted the offer because they are facing £10m losses due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
“Many players’ heads would have been turned by a big-money move to the continent.
“However, Cosgrove has shown admirable maturity in knocking back the deal to concentrate on reaching higher levels with Aberdeen.
“He clearly feels maintaining that scoring level at a high-profile club like Aberdeen can progress his career even further than the French second division.
“Cosgrove also has far more chance of winning silverware with Aberdeen than with a team that finished eighth in the French second tier.”
It is understood the initial fee offered for Cosgrove was £2.4m with a further £300,000 in add-ons.
The offer from Guingamp for Cosgrove blitzed Aberdeen’s record transfer fee of £1.75m received from Coventry City for club legend Eoin Jess in 1996.
The short timeframe involved in making such an important career decision is also understood to have been a factor in Cosgrove rejecting the move.
Aberdeen chairman Dave Cormack recently underlined no player would be sold on the cheap this summer, despite projected losses of £10m due to the Covid-19 crisis.
With the Dons losing £1m per month due to the pandemic, the club were willing to cash in on their star asset.
Cosgrove cost just £20,000 from Carlisle United in January 2018.
Selling him on for £2.7m would have represented a significant profit, but Harper believes they can pocket more in later windows if Cosgrove’s scoring form continues.
He said: “If Cosgrove produces the same scoring rate up until the winter transfer window, other clubs will come in for him for more than Guingamp offered.”
Guingamp reached the final of the French Cup (Coupe de la Ligue) in 2019, but lost out on penalties to Strasbourg following a 0-0 draw.
They defeated French giants Paris St Gerrmain (quarter-final) and Monaco (semi-final) en route to the final.
That season they were relegated to Ligue 2 and they were sitting eighth last term when football was suspended.