Celtic assistant manager Johann Mjallby has admitted Burnley striker Charlie Austin is a player they could target if Gary Hooper leaves - but he expects his top goalscorer to stay at Parkhead this month.
Mjallby said there had been no fresh bids for Hooper since Norwich had an offer rejected late last week. Hooper brushed aside the speculation over his future by scoring twice in a 4-1 victory over Hearts on Saturday and is preparing to face Dundee United in a rearranged Clydesdale Bank Premier League fixture on Tuesday.
Mjallby confirmed reports that 6ft 2in Austin is a potential target should Celtic need a new forward. The 23-year-old, who cost Burnley a reported ?1.8million from Swindon in July 2011, has scored 23 goals this season after netting 17 last term.
"He might be on the shortlist," Mjallby said.
"Charlie is a proven goalscorer and he might come in handy in the future.
"But right now we think Gary will stay on, at least until the summer, and that will be great for the club.
"He is a top-class player. It's not only his goals, the last couple of months have shown he is improving his all-round game. We can use him in midfield as well because he is a very clever player.
"We want to keep him because he is improving and making the team better. Gary has proven to be the best goalscorer for us so that's one of the reasons we want to keep him.
"We always have a shortlist for players in each and every position but right now we are just thinking about Gary staying because he is a very important figure for our squad."