The 21-year-old midfielder signed a four-year deal when he moved from Belgian side Beerschot for a reported £900,000 in 2011 but the Parkhead club, in line with their recent policy of rewarding performances, have offered him new terms. However, following Wanyama’s impressive display for the Hoops in their Champions League clash with Barcelona at the Nou Camp on Tuesday night, the player’s agent, Rob Moore, said: “Victor has informed Celtic the contract offer fell short of his expectations.”
The Celtic boss believes Wanyama is good enough to play for the Catalan giants, insisting he was in the “same mould” as Barca midfielder Alex Song, as he defended his valuation of the player before hitting out at Moore.
“I don’t know (if the value is realistic) but it is what I value him at,” said Lennon. “I think he is a wonderful talent and he can only get better.”
Lennon was less complimentary when discussing Moore’s revelation.
He said: “I am not sure Victor has turned it down.
“He has not spoken to me. A month ago he went on record saying how happy he was at the club and I have no reason to disbelieve that. I was with his representative in Barcelona on Tuesday and had a brief chat and there was no discussion of him having turned down a new contract. So this has come out of the blue and I am disappointed this has come out in public.”
Ahead of today’s SPL clash with Kilmarnock at Parkhead, Lennon also hit back at former Barcelona star Bernd Schuster who criticised Celtic’s tactics in the Nou Camp, accusing the Scottish champions of being too negative.
Lennon was both sarcastic and scathing with his retort: “It’s just the ramblings of someone who has failed as a coach.”