LYON have stepped up their interest in Celtic ‘target’ Levi Garcia – as a replacement for former Hoops ace Moussa Dembele.

The Parkhead scouts have been keeping tabs on the AEK Athens forward who is valued in the £13million bracket by the Greek giants, as CQN reported last week.

Trinidad and Tobago international Garcia, who has scored 18 goals from the right wing in his team’s title-winning crusade, has been watched by several top clubs in recent months with his eye-catching form.

ACTION MAN…Levi Garcia has netted 18 goals for AEK Athens this season.

Ange Postecoglou’s scouts have been impressed, but any hopes of a move for Garcia could be scuppered by Lyon who are desperately seeking firepower after the proposed summer exit of Dembele, who cost £19.8million when he joined from Celtic in the summer of 2018.

The Parkhead fans’ favourite, who had been brought to the club from Fulham by Brendan Rodgers two years earlier, will walk away from the Ligue 1 club next month when his deal expires.

Lyon have now launched as “ambitious” bid for Garcia, according to a report in sports media outlet Homme Du Match.

They acknowledge a hosts of clubs, including Stuttgart, Lazio and French pair Bordeaux and Lille, are monitoring the 25-year-old dangerman and admit he will be “spoiled for choice over his future destination”.

However, Lyon are eager to get a deal done early before it escalates into a bidding war.

Garcia still has two years to run on his contract after joining the Athens club for £2million from Beitar Jerusalem in 2020.

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