CELTIC will consider handing Callum McGregor a contract extension after they rebuffed an approach from his former manager Brendan Rodgers to take him to Leicester City on English transfer deadline day.

Neil Lennon spoke with the 26-year-old midfielder at training at Lennoxtown yesterday in the hours after the club gave short shrift to an 11th hour attempt from the Foxes to persuade McGregor south in a £20m deal.

While manager Neil Lennon said that the midfielder, a stand-out last season and a model of consistency in a campaign where he played as many minutes as anybody in world football, was “absolutely fine” with it, he hinted that the club could offer him a further extension on improved terms to reassure him of his importance to the club. The 26-year-old, who captained Scotland last term, is already under contract until 2023.

“There was an approach for Callum,” said Lennon, ahead of this lunchtime’s meeting with Motherwell at Fir Park. “We knew about it and there’s no more to it.

“Am I annoyed at the timing? No, it’s natural. We made it pretty clear that we wanted Callum to stay. He’s an important player here. We want him to continue in the same vein as the last two or three seasons.

“Callum’s good - I had a chat with him on Friday morning,” the Northern Irishman added. “He’s absolutely fine about it. Your mind does start to wander, that’s only natural, but now the window is shut he is fully focused on what he has to do here.

“He is level-headed. He’s another one who has come through the system and we are very proud of that.He’s an outstanding player and professional - and we made it clear we couldn’t do without him.

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“He can play in various midfield positions. There is so much quality to the way he plays.His football intelligence is very high, his quality has got better and he’s in great shape. Callum’s fitness levels are amazing considering how much football he has played.

“Clubs from other countries might show interest in some of the players, but as far we are concerned our important players are not for sale. Callum certainly comes into that bracket. We will possibly look to tie him down for longer. That’s something we may talk about with his representatives as we go along.”

The club announced the sale of Kieran Tierney to Arsenal, for a Scottish record of £25m, to the stock exchange yesterday morning. While Neil Lennon has been around the block enough to know that he won’t see it all immediately, the Northern Irishman feels the cash will allow him to be ambitious with their targets until the Scottish window closes on September 2. Top of his wish list are two full backs, quite possibly in time to play in the next round in Europe.

“Will it [the £25m fee] help to upgrade my wishlist?” said the Northern Irishman. “Yes. It will help. We aren’t going to go out and break the transfer record but we will try to be shrewd with it.

“We will look to up the quality if we can in the positions we want to. Ideally, we will have one or two in before the next European round. But there are no guarantees.”