Celtic open talks with Hooper over new deal in bid to ward off interest from Southampton
17:49 GMT, 22 May 2012
Celtic have opened talks over an improved contract for striker Gary Hooper.
Manager Neil Lennon revealed Celtic had begun moves to keep hold of the 24-year-old Englishman, who has been linked with a move to Barclays Premier League newcomers Southampton after hitting 29 goals last season.
Lennon told STV: 'We had a preliminary meeting with his agent last week and it was very cordial.
Big hit: Gary Hooper scored 29 goals last season as Celtic won the SPL title
'It went very well and we made it clear that we want Gary to stay.
'Gary likes it here and he's happy here. He's had such a good season and he's such a good player that no doubt there'll be clubs in for him, but we'll try and resist all offers that come our way.'