Celtic move for Flood with United resigned to losing midfielder

CELTIC are weighing up a move for Dundee United midfielder Willo Flood before the transfer window shuts on February 2.

The Republic of Ireland B international is on his second season-long loan from Cardiff City but the Bluebirds are eager to offload him from their wage bill so will accept a nominal bid from the Parkhead club, likely to be in the region of 60,000.

Flood's contract at Ninian Park expires at the end of the season so they will be easy to deal with. The Dublin-born 23-year-old, a Celtic supporter, has been in contract talks with United but seems certain to snub their offer for a lucrative move to the SPL leaders.

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Stephen Thompson, the United chairman, has pulled out all the stops to try to keep Flood but admits the club are powerless to stop him leaving.

Thompson said: "It's outwith our control, really, because he's just on loan to us from Cardiff. We won't get a say in it. It's really up to them what happens and if Celtic have an offer accepted, which we presume they will, the decision will be Willo's. We've made him a fantastic offer and would love him to stay but in the end he'll make up his own mind."

Celtic manager Gordon Strachan side-stepped the issue after yesterday's win over Hibs but United manager Craig Levein admitted they were in danger of losing the player.

"Cardiff haven't been in touch with us and Celtic haven't been in touch with us," Levein said. "But you have to remember in this situation that we aren't even in the loop. If Celtic want Willo Flood, they go to Cardiff to get Willo Flood, not us. I desperately want to keep him. But when things are going well and your team is doing well and there are bigger clubs out there with more money, you lose players."

Flood began his senior career with Manchester City but made just five league starts in three years and left to join Cardiff.

No one at Parkhead would comment on the move for Flood but a senior source confirmed the club's interest. The two teams are due to meet in the semi-final of the Co-operative Cup at Hampden on Wednesday.