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Monday, 19 June, 2000, 16:18 GMT 17:18 UK
Celtic's Sutton bid accepted
Sutton
Sutton has not had much to smile about at Chelsea
Celtic have had a 6m bid accepted for Chelsea striker Chris Sutton.

Sutton was reported to have been at Celtic Park on Sunday to be shown around.

New Celtic manager Martin O'Neill is working as a television pundit on Euro 2000, but gave chief executive Allan MacDonald the go-ahead to table a bid for the 27-year-old former Norwich and Blackburn star.

Chelsea have already accepted an offer of the same value from Middlesbrough for the player who must now choose where his career path leads.

Martin O'Neill
O'Neill: Sanctioned move
Sutton has failed to impress at Chelsea following his 10m move and Stamford Bridge boss, Gianluca Vialli, has given him permission to leave for a cut-price fee.

The player will hold discussions with his agent, John Viola, before making up his mind.

Neither Celtic nor Chelsea were willing to go into detail about the bid, but a Chelsea spokesman said: "We have agreed a bid of 6m with Celtic and now it is up to the player."

Big success

Chelsea's assistant manager Gwyn Williams believes Sutton would be a success in Scotland.

Williams said: "Chris has never stopped working hard at his game. He's learned from working with players such as Gianfranco Zola, George Weah and Tore Andre Flo.

"Chelsea have had four world-class strikers this season, Chris being one of them, and even though he's had a tough time, he's never let his head drop and is still determined to be a success.

"At Blackburn he thrived on wide players like Stuart Ripley and Jason Wilcox crossing the ball for him and possibly that's what he's missed at Chelsea. Here we play a different style.

Hasselbaink
Hasselbaink: Strking competition
"There's also the problem that even when we go to places like Anfield, as we did early in the season, the home team sit in against us.

"Even when Blackburn won the league, no-one did that against them because they felt Blackburn could be beaten.

"From what I see Celtic have 75% of the play in most games and Chris is at his best with the ball in the box."

Viduka doubts

Sutton's time at Chelsea has not been a happy one, with only two goals against Manchester United and Hull City to his name.

He suffered from Chelsea's rotation system, though he was often preferred to Flo in Premiership matches.

The arrival of Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink will not have increased Sutton's chances of a regular place next season at Stamford Bridge.

Celtic's approach for Sutton casts further doubts over the Parkhead future of striker Mark Viduka, who has been repeatedly linked with a move to Leeds.

Leeds chairman Peter Ridsdale was reluctant to discuss such a move.

"I think you need to ask Celtic," said Ridsdale. "It's unfair to comment on matters when footballers are under contract.

"We are not prepared to confirm or deny anything until a deal is done because that could lead to problems with other clubs."

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See also:

16 Jun 00 | FA Carling Premiership
'Boro agree Sutton deal
06 Jun 00 | Scottish Premier
Dalglish plays down speculation
01 Jun 00 | Football
O'Neill unveiled as Celtic boss
31 May 00 | Holland
Chelsea seal 15m Hasselbaink deal
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