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Lennon: Celtic in strong position over Tierney's future

The Celtic manager says he wants the Scotland defender to remain with the club.

Celtic boss Neil Lennon has said the club are in a "strong position" over Kieran Tierney's future and that they know their valuation of the international full-back is a fair one.

Arsenal have had two bids for the left-back rejected, with the second totalling £25m.

Other clubs have been linked with a move for the 22-year-old, who is a lifelong Celtic fan and has already won eight trophies with the side.

Lennon said the attention being paid to Tierney wasn't a problem but was clear on Celtic's position that they have a value attached to the player and have no need to sell.

"It's certainly not a distraction for us and the players but I'm sure it could be unsettling for Kieran, as we've touched on before," he said.

"You all know the situation. The club's valuation of Kieran has not been met and until then we don't have a discussion to make, really.

"You would need to ask Arsenal [if they are going to bid again]. I don't know what Arsenal's financial state is. I know what ours is and we're quite comfortable with the situation at the minute.

"I know there's been a second bid, the bid's been rejected and it's as you were.

"We know he's a great player and a great talent and at 22 he's already achieved a hell of a lot in his career. He's got so much more to give to the game.

"It doesn't surprise me that there are potential suitors out there for a player of his quality but he's our player, he's on a long-term contract and while it's a compliment for all the people here who have worked with him over the years, we don't want him to go."

'We're certainly not going to be pushed over in any negotiations and we're in a very strong position with regard to a number of our assets in the team.'
Neil Lennon

Asked if he though Arsenal were being "disrespectful" with a relatively low bid compared to the prices being paid in England, including Manchester United's £50m purchase of full-back Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Lennon disagreed but said Celtic's valuation was set and took into account the Scotland international's achievements so far.

"We can't do anything about what clubs do in England," he said.

"£50m for [Aaron] Wan-Bissaka is a lot of money and we feel that Kieran is a far more experienced and rounded full-back at this juncture in his career.

"He's an asset for us and we do have a value for the player and we rate the player very highly.

"So disrespectful is the wrong word but we're certainly not going to be pushed over in any negotiations and we're in a very strong position with regard to a number of our assets in the team."

As the squad prepare for their Champions League qualifying second leg against Sarajevo, Lennon confirmed Tierney was still several weeks away from full training as he recovers from a pelvic injury.

And the manager said that he had spoken to the player and told him to make recovery his main focus for the time being.

"[I told him to] just try and settle and concentrate on the here and now," he said. "Don't look too far ahead.

"Don't get your hopes up or your hopes down, just try and be level with it and get yourself fit because he's in the middle of his rehab."

Lennon also discussed the club's ongoing search for players to fill the right-back position, explaining that the club was hoping to sign two players for the position and that ideally one would arrive before the next round of Champions League qualifying, should Celtic complete the job against Sarajevo on Wednesday.

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