Rangers legend Ally McCoist recalls telling Walter Smith to sign a young Luka Modric when he was still playing in Croatia.
McCoist told TalkSport of a scouting trip to see Vedran Corluka and coming away telling Smith how good Modric would be if he could sign him.
He said: “Zagreb were playing Hadjik Split. Walter sent me over to watch Corluka. Walter asked ‘how did it go?’ I said, I don’t know how much money we’ve got but there’s a wee fella playing in the middle of the park. Modric.
“Go and see, if you can get him, gaffer, he is unbelievable. He picked the phone up, he put the phone back down, and said ‘forget it’. Too much for us. He looked light years ahead of anything else on that pitch.”
The finances in Scottish football make it so tough these days for even the top clubs to get emerging players like Modric.
He cost £15.8 million (Telegraph) when he eventually left Croatia to join Tottenham and that was in 2008. Scottish sides would probably not even be able to afford that now, over ten years on.
It would have been a throwback to the days of the de Boer brothers at Ibrox if Modric had have brought his classy style north of the border.