By Democrat reporter
Celtic are “looking at other options” in their goalkeeper signing search after Fraser Forster hesitated on a return to the East Enders, says manager Neil Lennon.
The Scottish champions have agreed a deal with Southampton, according to Lennon, to bring Forster, 32, back for the club’s bid for a 10th successive title after his loan spell last season.
Scott Bain is Celtic’s only first-team keeper following Craig Gordon’s exit.
Dumbarton man, Stevie Woods, is the Celtic goalkeeping coach and he will no doubt be giving advice to the manager on who the new custodian might be.
“It’s gone quiet from the player’s side of things,” Lennon told Sky Sports.
“We would dearly love him back here but if that’s not going to be the case then we’ll look elsewhere.
“We’re looking at a number of options on the goalkeeping front. It’s such an important position and Fraser did wonderful things for us last season.
“Ideally we’ll try to get an exceptional number one in again.”
Having brought winger Mohamed Elyounoussi back for a second loan spell from Southampton, Lennon is looking to add “one or two” more signings.
He confirmed Celtic will be in France this week for “some big pre-season games” as they build towards their 2 August Premiership opener against Hamilton Academical.
With the first Old Firm derby of the season taking place in the last round of fixtures in October, Lennon is hopeful partial crowds will be permitted to Celtic Park by then.
And he has warned his side focus will be key in a potentially historic league campaign.
“It is monumental what we are going for but we can’t let that distract us,” he added.
“We’ve got to just take it as the next title. There’s going to be a lot of hype surrounding it from the outside and we have to keep a balance.”