JOE Hart has hailed Celtic for turning down a bid for Matt O’Riley from Atletico Madrid and expressed confidence the playmaker will not let speculation about his future have a detrimental impact on his form.

Spanish club Atletico had wanted to take Danish internationalist O’Riley on loan until the end of the season and then buy him during the summer – but their offer was rejected by the Scottish champions.

Brendan Rodgers last week stressed the midfielder, who has also been linked with La Liga leaders Girona and Serie A challengers Inter Milan in recent weeks, will not leave during the January transfer window.

Hart is pleased that his team mate will be remaining at Parkhead and is certain he will carry on giving his all in the months ahead as Celtic attempt to retain the cinch Premiership and Scottish Cup trophies. 

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Asked if he thought O’Riley would be unsettled by the interest in him, the former England internationalist said: “That’s for Matt to talk about, I can only support him as a team mate.

“He is an excellent player and someone I love playing with and being a part of from a social point of view. When you play at the levels he’s at people are going to be interested. Such is life. But he shows his commitment every single day to what we’re trying to do and long may that continue.”

The Herald: Meanwhile, Hart has also welcomed Celtic tying up centre half Cameron Carter-Vickers, who had attracted the interest of several Premier League clubs during the transfer window, on a new five-and-a-half year deal that keeps him at Parkhead until 2029. 

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“Powerful moves, powerful moves,” he said. “Cam is a top player and he is loved here, rightly so for the performances he puts in.

“He does it away from prying eyes as well, he is a top professional. I knew him from Tottenham and he is a pleasure to play with.

“I’m the other side of the Cameron and Matt O’Riley situations and I’m pleased about that because I can just focus on playing football.”