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Page last updated at 17:00 GMT, Friday, 30 July 2010 18:00 UK

Celtic boss Neil Lennon confirms bid for Aiden McGeady


Lennon confirms McGeady bid

Celtic manager Neil Lennon has confirmed there is "a big offer on the table" for winger Aiden McGeady.

McGeady, 24, has been linked with a move away from the Scottish club and last month was reportedly the subject of a £8.3m bid by Spartak Moscow.

Lennon said he was unsure whether the Republic of Ireland international would leave before the start of the season.

"There's strong interest, not just from Moscow. We believe there's interest from other clubs as well," he said.

McGeady, who signed a five-year deal in 2008, was absent from Celtic's Champions League qualifying defeat by Braga in midweek.

But he travelled with the rest of the squad to London for this weekend's Emirates Cup.

Celtic say McGeady has been recovering from thigh and back injuries but trained on Thursday ahead of the challenge games against Lyon on Saturday and Arsenal the following day.

If the offer's right for the club and right for the player then it's hard to stop these things going through

Celtic manager Neil Lennon

Lennon said he had not asked McGeady a direct question about his intentions.

"I haven't really sat down and said: 'are you away?', or 'do you want to go?' or anything like that because I don't want to put unnecessary pressure on him," the Celtic boss added.

Lennon said McGeady had proved an important player for Celtic who would grace any league in the world.

"He's a big player for us and he has been for a number of seasons," he added.

"He was very important to me in the run-in to last season. He's a talented player, a very talented player. But every player has his price and sometimes we can't stand in the way of that.

"If the offer's right for the club and right for the player then it's hard to stop these things going through."

Meanwhile, Lennon said the club had not held talks with former Germany goalkeeper Timo Hildebrand.

Goalkeeper Timo Hildebrand
Timo Hildebrand says Celtic have made an approach to sign him

The 31-year-old is a free agent after his deal with Bundesliga outfit Hoffenheim was not extended this summer.

And Celtic, who have missed out on England goalkeeper David James, are searching for a replacement for Artur Boruc, who has joined Fiorentina.

"Celtic are interested and that is very interesting for me," Hildebrand told Germany's Bild newspaper.

Hildebrand rose to fame as part of the Stuttgart team which secured the Bundesliga title in 2007, but experienced a difficult 18 months in Spain with Valencia.

He returned to Germany in January last year with a move to Hoffenheim, but is now looking for a new club.

"There have been no talks as far as I'm concerned," said Lennon.

However, he added: "We've only got one sort of consistent goalkeeper in Lukasz Zaluska and we need to get another one in.

"We lost a superb goalkeeper in Artur Boruc so it's imperative that we replace him and the quicker the better."

On James's move to Bristol City, Lennon said: "I do think he has more to offer at a higher level than the Championship - he is England's number one goalie and just played at the World Cup.

"He would have been ideal for us in terms of his experience, presence and charisma, but these things happen in football.

"But I don't think he's made a mistake, he's moved there for genuine personal reasons."

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see also
McCourt aims to emulate McGeady
30 Jul 10 |  Celtic
Bristol City capture keeper James
30 Jul 10 |  Bristol City
McGeady 'likely to snub Spartak'
06 Jun 10 |  Celtic
Celtic warn Spartak off McGeady
04 Jun 10 |  Celtic

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