Livingston interim chairman Robert Wilson insists it would take a huge offer to even tempt the club into selling teenage sensation Matthew Knox despite the club’s relegation to League 1.
The Lions lost their place in the Championship after a 8-6 aggregate defeat to Stranraer in their relegation play-off semi final on Saturday and will now compete in Scottish football’s third tier next season.
The club’s board will meet this weekend to implement a plan going forward, which is likely to involve discussions over the future of manager David Hopkin, whose contract expires at the end of the month.
But, despite some quarters suggesting the West Lothian outfit will now cash in on midfielder Knox in a bid to offset some of the financial woes the club can expect from relegation, Wilson is adamant that isn’t the case.
The 16-year-old, who has been on trial this season with a host of English Premier League clubs including Manchester United, Liverpool and Tottenham, made his Lions debut coming on as a substitute in the 4-1 victory over St Mirren on Boxing Day. The youngster also spent time on trial with Rangers in March, prompting Ibrox boss Mark Warburton into publicly revealing he’d like to sign the player in time for next season.
The Championship’s league winners have already had an initial bid of £75,000 rejected but are believed to be preparing another offer in a bid to get their man.
However, Wilson says the club are determined to build their team around the teenager next season.
“We do not have to sell him, simple as that,” Wilson said. “It doesn’t make a difference what division we’re in next season so we want to keep him here and develop him.
“He’s only 16 and he still hasn’t played a lot of first-team football. We know the potential he’s got so it would take a really big offer to even tempt us into selling him. As far as we’re concerned, he will be at Livingston next season.”