Former Celts

Hoops hopes diminish as striker is linked with switch to Iraq

Image for Hoops hopes diminish as striker is linked with switch to Iraq

The prospects of Gary Hooper rejoining Celtic have been further reduced with reports that he is wanted by two clubs in Iraq.

In 2010 Neil Lennon made the then Scunthorpe striker one of his key signings where he starred alongside Anthony Stokes as Celtic won two titles with Hooper scoring in every competition including the Europa League and Champions League.

Last season he played a handful of games for Sheffield Wednesday but has been without a club since the end of the season.

There has been various suggestions that Hopper could become a signing target for Celtic but a recent enquiry from Bristol City came to a halt over his personal terms. It seems that the 31-year-old is looking for wages in line with his Sheffield Wednesday terms where he was on a three year contract on the back of a £3m move from Norwich.

With doubts over the availability of Leigh Griffiths and Vakoun Bayo largely untested in the Scottish game Celtic are expected to be in the market for a striker in January.

Odsonne Edouard is clearly Lennon’s first choice striker but any injury to the French u-21 striker could cause problems with no like for like replacement.

Since leaving Celtic in 2013 Hooper has only scored 48 goals but his strike average remains high with an obvious connection to Lennon.

As a free agent Hooper can sign for a club outside of the transfer window.

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