NORTHERN IRELAND Under-21 international striker David Parkhouse, who has been linked with Celtic, has knocked back a new contract with Sheffield United.
The 20-year-old frontman’s current deal with the Premier League outfit expires in the summer.
Parkhouse has rejected a further 12 months and is looking to seal a move from Bramall Lane in January.
The Scottish champions have already made contact with his agent, according to the Derry Journal, and could agree a pre-contract with the player now he has entered the final six months of his contract.
As well as the Hoops, Everton and Blackburn Rovers are also reported to be monitoring the highly-rated youngster.
Parkhouse, who claimed 19 goals during a season-long loan at Derry City, explained to the Sheffield United News his reasons for wanting to quit.
He said: “I haven’t turned it down out of disrespect to Sheffield United. But you have to sit down and look at where your future is going to lie.
“I’ve been up with the first team since I’ve been back, I’ve been training and done well. But I have to assess whether there will be a breakthrough for me in the team at some point.
“Looking at it now, there’s not really going to be that opportunity. I know injuries can sometimes give you a chance, but you can’t sit back and bank on injuries happening.
“I’m by no means being cocky or thinking I’m bigger than Sheffield United, because I know I’m not. But I know my worth, as well. I know where I want to be at this moment in time. And what I’ve been offered just isn’t for me at the minute.”
Neil Lennon has been looking to strengthen his striking department and has been linked with Slovan Bratislava’s prolific Andraz Sporar.
However, the Irishman is light up front with Odsonne Edouard requiring support. When the Frenchman was deemed not 100 per cent to start in the Betfred League Cup Final last month, winger Lewis Morgan led the attack with Leigh Griffiths and Vakoun Issouf Bayo overlooked.
The game against Steven Gerrard’s side turned with the introduction of the French marksman for the former St Mirren flanker and the Hoops went on to collect their 10th successive domestic honour with a goal from Christopher Jullien.
Lennon added to his strike-force when he lured Jonathan Afolabi from Southampton in the summer and the Republic of Ireland prospect is seen as one for the future.
Parkhouse could be seen in the same category.