Lafferty feels 'honoured' to become Celtic target

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The Independent Football

The Celtic target Kyle Lafferty said he is "honoured" to be wanted by the Scottish champions.

It is understood the 19-year-old Northern Ireland international was subject of a bid yesterday by the Scottish Premier League leaders. And although Lafferty grew up as a Rangers fan that will not prevent him joining the Hoops if a deal is agreed. "Celtic are a huge club and I'm honoured to be the subject of a bid," he said. "There is a long way to go, but I will be talking to my club and my agent. I will also have to have a long chat with my mum and dad. I grew up supporting Rangers, but that won't stand in my way and the lure of European football is very appealing."

Liverpool, Manchester City and Blackburn are also understood to be interested although Lafferty's departure from Turf Moor would not be popular with the Burnley faithful. The 6ft 4in striker from Enniskillen, County Fermanagh, is regarded as the natural long-term successor to James Quinn for the national side and in August scored his first goal for his country against Finland.

The Northern Ireland head coach, Lawrie Sanchez, has singled Lafferty out as one for the future. He said: "Kyle has got a lot going for him. He's one of a rare breed with a physical presence."