NEIL Lennon last night moved to reassure Celtic supporters that his key players are at Parkhead for the long haul as Gary Hooper became the second high-profile departure of the summer.

Hooper completed his £5m move to Norwich City where he will face former team-mate Victor Wanyama in the Barclays Premier League after the latter's £12.5m transfer to Southampton.

The loss of two key players, and the huge income Celtic have generated from sales and their Champions League run last season, has led to pressure and expectation from fans that there will be significant investment in the team ahead of the new campaign. Lennon still hopes to sign one or possibly even two strikers, including one who could face Elfsborg in the Champions League third qualifying round first leg on Wednesday. The registration deadline passed on Thursday but an exception can be made for one addition up to 24 hours before the first leg.

"We're definitely going to try and bring one or two strikers in and we're working away at that at the minute, though it's easier said than done," said Lennon. "We're allowed to bring in one before Wednesday and I think we will. I'm hoping so, anyway.

"Whether I put him straight in against Elfsborg will depend on the condition of the player. If we can get him in in time, and see how he is in training, then I'd imagine he'd be in the squad anyway. Hopefully it'll be over the weekend.

"It's a challenge and it's an exciting one that confronts me. It took us a wee while to get to the position we were in [last season] and you don't want to stop the progression. But it's not as if everybody wants to come here, play for a couple of years and bog off and earn a load of money. There's a core we'd like to stay – Georgios Samaras, Joe Ledley, Scott Brown, Kris Commons – and they've all intimated how happy they are.

"Hooper brought real quality, he was averaging 30 goals a season and that is very, very difficult to replace. But we are actively looking for a genuine goalscorer."

Lennon admitted the prospect of luring his primary target, Artjoms Rudnevs, from Hamburg was looking "more and more distant now", while Seber Khelifa at Evian and Kevin Doyle at Wolves were merely on a list of options. The striker he was now working to bring in had not yet been linked publicly with the club, he said.