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Celtic boss Neil Lennon defends handling of Victor Wanyama sale

Updated: Thursday, 27 Jun 2013 07:49 | Comments

Victor Wanyama looks certain to leave Celtic
Victor Wanyama looks certain to leave Celtic

Boss Neil Lennon has defended Celtic's handling of the Victor Wanyama transfer negotiations in the wake of comments from the player's representative.

The Hoops accepted an offer from Southampton, reported to be in the region of £12million, for the highly-rated midfielder.

However, the 22-year-old's agent Ivan Modia has claimed Wanyama is not in talks with Saints and told Sky Sports: "The player will not be forced into a corner to accept the Southampton deal, just because it is good for Celtic."

Lennon said: "I'm unhappy because we have dealt with things as professionally as possible.

"What we have done is accepted a bid from Southampton, who are a very good club, a very progressive club.

"Personally, I think it would be a very good move for Victor in terms of his career going forward but there seems to be other bodies who want to block the deal.

"There has been a lot of talk in the last couple of days.

"We accepted a bid from Southampton and we've done nothing wrong in our eyes as always.

"The ball is firmly in the court of Victor's representatives.

"You don't know what's around the corner. I would imagine there would be other interested parties but we've had no confirmation from any other clubs yet."

Cardiff have also been linked with Wanyama, who appears increasingly unlikely to be a Celtic player next season.

Lennon said: "The fact that we have accepted a bid tells you that we feel that matches our valuation of the player.

"We don't know where we are with it at the minute, there seems to be a bit of a stand-off.

"We felt the money was right for us, a good business deal for the club. Whether it resurfaces again, I don't know."

Celtic have already recruited Virgil van Dijk and Amido Balde and Lennon is keen to add another couple of new faces irrespective of whether Wanyama leaves or not.

One of those players could be French defender Steven Mouyokolo, who is on trial and could join Celtic on their pre-season tour of Germany.

Lennon said: "He has been here this week. We will have a bounce game behind closed doors on Saturday and get a good look at Steven then.

"If he comes through that okay, then we're hoping to progress that and take him to Germany.

"He's a player we have liked for quite a while and he's fitted in very well."

Lennon was promoting a legends' charity match which will take place on September 8 to celebrate the career of former Hoops player Stiliyan Petrov, who announced his retirement last month as he continues his battle with leukaemia.

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