NEIL LENNON insists Celtic are in a “very strong position” to keep Kieran Tierney.
Arsenal have had two bids rejected for the 22-year-old Scotland international left-back with the second offer of £25million matching the apparent valuation of the defender.
However, the second submission is understood to include some unacceptable add-ons, including a guarantee of the Gunners finishing in the top four to achieve a place in the Champions League at the end of the season.
The Parkhead chiefs are demanding more upfront cash with some reports saying the initial payment could be as low as £18million. The Hoopes are not willing to compromise on the defender who is under contract until 2023.
Asked for the latest twist on the transfer saga which has been running since last month, Lennon, speaking to Sky Sports News, admitted: “It’s as you were, really. I’ve had no information other than there was two bids that came in from Arsenal that were rejected.
“There has been no further inroads into that. Our valuation of Kieran wasn’t met and it’s as simple as that.
“You will see other transfers not going through because valuations haven’t been met. It’s not a case of Arsenal being disrespectful.
“They put a bid in that they valued the player at. They came back again and obviously see Kieran as a very good player, as we do. But on a long-term contract we’re in a very strong position when it comes to Kieran.”
However, one deal that looks to be nearing completion is that of Israeli international defender Hatem Abd Elhamed on a £1.6million move from Hapoel Be’er Sheva. A work permit is required to rubber-stamp the right-back’s four-year contract, but it appears to be a formality.
Lennon will be delighted with the addition to his squad, but has already said he is looking to strengthen the No.2 position with another new face after Mikael Lustig, Cristian Gamboa and Jeremy Toljan all left Parkhead at the end of the season.