NIALL McGINN has vowed Northern Ireland have still to reach their peak as he pleaded with Michael O'Neill not to become the new Scotland manager.

The Scottish Football Association and the Irish Football Association reached a compensation agreement on Friday and the 48-year-old is poised to hold talks with Hampden bosses this week about becoming Gordon Strachan's successor.

O'Neill has long been the favourite to land the role after his work with Northern Ireland. In 2016 he guided them to their first European Championships and the first major tournament since the World Cup of 1986. His squad fell just short of making it to this summer's World Cup in Russia after going out in the play-off to Switzerland, but the IFA still offered him a four-year extension to the £500,000 a year deal which expires in 2020.

However, on the back of last week's developments, McGinn, who has featured regularly under O'Neill for their country, has urged him to get his squad another chance to prove they can make history together.

“I would dispute the view he’s taken us as far as he can - 100%. Yes, we have older players but you need them for experience and they still have quality. Some are playing at premier league level," said the Aberdeen forward.

“I would say to him that we haven't yet reached our peak. we’re coming together as a squad and work extremely hard.

“We’re not blessed with vast numbers of players but we have shown in the last few years that with his organisation we can compensate for that.

“For us as a group we’d love him to stay. He’s brought the team and the fan base together. He's put us on the map again and for me personally it’s been unbelievable chapter in my career to get to the Euros and push for the World Cup.

“I think another crack at the Euros is within us and to have Michael still there would be great."

McGinn acknowledges the speculation over their national team's manager has been a distraction but he is contented by the fact a decision should be imminent.

The 30-year-old said: “Its difficult for the players but when a team is doing well clubs will come calling or international sides will want him.

“He’s done so well with us to get attention from other employers and we’d all love him to stay.

“The thing is he's had plenty of time to think about it and I’m sure we’ll know sooner rather than later because of that.

“If he goes we wish him all the best and if he stays we’ll be delighted and push on.”

McGinn added: “Its down to him and what he wants from his life. That’s what it will boil down to I think.

“He’s done so well with Northern Ireland and he knows he’s loved by the players, the fans and the entire nation.

“It’s now down to what he wants to do with his career and what steps he wants to take in management.

“If he goes we wish him all the best and if he stays then I can tell you the whole of Northern Ireland will be buzzing.”