Scott Brown hailed John McGinn as his natural successor at Celtic Park - as the Parkhead club prepare to launch a third bid for the Hibs midfielder.
The 23-year-old has already been the subject of two failed offers from the Scottish champions - the last of which is believed to have been £1.75million.
McGinn, however, is thought to have told Hibernian officials he's only interested in moving to Celtic, thus shutting down the possibility of a bidding war with English clubs.
Celtic are preparing to table their third bid this summer for Hibernian midfielder John McGinn
Celtic captain Scott Brown hailed McGinn as his natural successor in midfield at Parkhead
With the Easter Road club holding out for £4m, there is no sign of an immediate resolution.
McGinn was part of the Hibs squad that touched down in the Faroe Islands on Tuesday night and is fit to play in their Europa League qualifier on Thursday night against NSI Runavik after sitting out the first leg six days ago with a thigh strain.
Should he line up at the Svangaskard Stadium, he would be cup-tied for the qualification rounds of the Champions League if he moved to Celtic - although he would still be able to play from the group phase onwards.
But Brown, who also moved from Leith to Glasgow's East End in 2007, is adamant Celtic are right to play the long game - with his club potentially landing someone worthy of his billing.
McGinn sat out last week's Europa League qualifying win over NSI Runavik with a thigh strain
Asked if McGinn could be his long-term replacement at club level, Brown replied: 'He's already done that with Scotland. When I was John's age, I was a totally different player to him.
'I just ran about smashing people. John's got a lot more than I had at that age. I've matured into playing central midfield and sitting in front of the back four more.
'John's still got that energy to go from box to box. When he has that, he might as well use it to his full ability.'
Asked if he'd spoken to McGinn recently, Brown replied: 'Yeah. I've just sent him a few wee jokes. You can imagine what. I let you be the judge of that.'
Celtic made their opening £1.5m offer for the player two weeks ago but still appear to be some distance away from concluding the deal.
Rodgers, though, insists he's understanding of the fact that not every transfer is signed off as quickly as he would like it.
'You have to be patient, of course,' said the Celtic manager.
'Every coach and manager wants the player in tomorrow but it is not my expertise. I can only recommend players with our scouting team that we think can improve us.
Celtic boss Brendan Rodgers conceded he must remain 'patient' in his quest to sign McGinn
The box-to-box player has told Hibs he only wants to leave Leith for the Scottish champions
'Because that is what is important for us - we don't need to overhaul and that constant recycling of players. We have a group of players who are exciting and you can see the developments in them. But we want to improve the squad.'
Winger Mikey Johnston has been linked with a loan move to Hibs and St Mirren. With Jonny Hayes and Lewis Morgan presently injured, Rodgers won't sanction that at the moment but hinted that it's something he could revisit when he has a full quota of players.
'Mikey is a big talent,' Rodgers said. 'There's obviously interest from a number of clubs. You are in the situation where (you are thinking) can you give the talent game time he needs? Being around this squad will development him, as opposed to getting games in his legs.
'He's developing well but not at this point are we thinking of letting him out. You always have to be mindful there are a couple of injuries.
'But you don't want to stop that growth and development.'
Confirming he'd held discussions with various managers about Johnston's situation, Rodgers continued: 'There are a number of clubs interested.
'With Alan (Stubbs, the St Mirren boss), we had a very good chat about Mikey and they've got a good history of bringing young players through.
'There are other guys I've spoken to as well so we'll see.
Rodgers also says there are no immediate plans to loan out young prospect Mikey Johnston
'It just depends. We don't want him to stagnate. He might play less games here but he'll be learning still and that's important.'
Rodgers' side play the second leg of the first Champions League qualifier against Alashkert on Wednesday night.
Despite being 3-0 up from the first leg, Rodgers won't risk either Tom Rogic or Cristian Gamboa with the pair still building up their fitness after enjoying a two-week holiday after the World Cup. But Craig Gordon returns after nursing a sore wrist at the weekend.
Meanwhile, Celtic target Harry Wilson has joined Derby County on a season-long loan.
Rodgers wanted the Liverpool wide-man to add depth to his squad but the Welsh international has been snapped up by new Rams boss Frank Lampard instead.