June 14, 2024

Norwich City, Torino and Sporting-linked Max Johnston opens up on future hopes

The full-back has spoken about the interest surrounding him as he considers next destination in career

Max Johnston has opened up on the transfer speculation surrounding him, as he looks set to bid farewell to Motherwell.

The 19-year-old full-back’s contract with the Steelmen ran out at the end tof the season and he has not committed to the new deal offered to him by Motherwell boss Stuart Kettlewell towards in the final knockings of last term.

English Championship outfit Norwich City, Italian Serie A side Torino and Portuguese giants Sporting Lisbon are among the club chasing his signature for next season and Johnston has told Daily Record he is yet to decide where his future lies, but he wants to play at ‘the highest level possible.’

He said: “I still don’t know what the future holds. There has been a lot of interest from clubs from the English Premier League and Championship, Portugal, Serie A and the Bundesliga.

“I have spoken with a few clubs and others have spoken with my agent. It has been mental so much so that I have tried to stay off social media but it is near impossible when my pals tag me into everything, when I have been linked with different teams.

“It has always been about playing football for me.

“Wherever I go next season I want to push on again.

“I want to get the highest level I can. I don’t want to go to a club and pick up a decent wage but having very little chance of first-team football.

“I want to learn, develop and progress. I want to go to a club where I know if I can do well that I will get a run in the first-team.

“I know you are never guaranteed to play but I want to give myself the best opportunity to do that.

“It is then up to me to push and win a jersey.”

The Scotland under-21 international started last season on loan at Cove Rangers before Steven Hammell recalled him in January to help the Steelmen’s flagging season.

Johnston proved to be a shining light in an otherwise dismal run and when Stuart Kettlewell took the reins in the aftermath of a Scottish Cup defeat to Raith Rovers that cost Hammell his job, Johnston only continued to flourish.

He picked up the Scottish Football Writers’ Young Player of the Year awards at the end of the campaign, as Motherwell produced an impressive revival to climb off the bottom of the Premiership and finish seventh.

Johnston said: ”I was third choice [at Motherwell] because I had two Scotland internationals in Stephen O’Donnell and Paul McGinn in front of me.

“I went to Cove at the start of the season and it was the best thing I did.

“Playing under Jim McIntyre and Jimmy Boyle was good to me, gave me games and trusted me, when I wasn’t playing at Motherwell.

“It was really beneficial and then Stevie Hammell took me back at a good time and I managed to do well when I got back to Motherwell.

“Stuart Kettlewell came in and turned it around and all the boys have turned it around as a team.

“I was delighted to play so many games and to chip in with a few goals and assists and to make sure the team finished on a high.

“So to cap it off by winning the Scottish Football Writers’ Association’s award and I also got the young player award at Motherwell was just amazing.”





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