CELTIC are bracing themselves for a second Chelsea bid for goalkeeper Craig Gordon before the transfer window closes tomorrow night.
The Scotland international No.1 kept a clean sheet as the Hoops thumped Hearts 4-0 yesterday to create a record of 27 domestic games unbeaten, overtaking the previous best of 26 set by the Lisbon Lions 50 years ago.
Brendan Rodgers maintains he doesn’t want to lose Gordon, although it is believed privately the 34-year-old shotstopper will seek permission from the club to enter into dialogue with the London outfit if another offer is received.
Stamford Bridge boss Antonio Conte is reported to have made an original bid of less than £3million for Gordon, who still has 18 months to run on his current contract with the Hoops holding a one-year option at the end of the season.
Boss Rodgers said: “There is nothing new. Craig is a player we want to keep.
“Chelsea have an interest in him, but for any interest to be activated there has to be a valuation of the player that has to be met.
“We don’t want to sell him, of course, but if there’s any way that would make Celtic think then there has to be an offer that would allow us to do that as a club. And what came in was nowhere near that level.
“There’s nothing we have got from Chelsea that would make us think in any way we would want to lose a goalkeeper.
“He is a player I really want to keep here. I have enjoyed seeing his progress and development.
”Craig is a player, with all due respect, when myself and my staff came in here, was a far cry away from what he is now as a goalkeeper.
“He is a goalkeeper who, whenever I studied the games here in the past, when the ball went back to Craig the crowd were nervous and the players were nervous and he was probably nervous.
“If you look at him now his game because of our style has elevated him to one of the best clubs in Europe wanting to take him down there as a number two.
“I have had a few conversations with him and he is clear where we are at.
“I understand the lure of Chelsea and I also understand what it would mean for Craig to go there as a number two for the next two years and waste away his career in not playing games.”
Sky Sports are reporting that the second bid today will be for £4million the the Premier League leaders determined to get their man.
Whether this meets Celtic’s valuation remains to be seen and it may take around another million to see any deal agreed.