Neil Lennon admits he is unaware of any discussions between Celtic and Southampton over the sale of Jos Hooiveld.
The Dutch defender has established himself as a key figure on the south coast, helping the Saints to the top of the English Championship table.
Hooiveld is currently on loan with Southampton until January, but STV understands talks have started between the two clubs over the permanent departure of the player.
Given Celtic’s struggles in the centre of defence, Lennon was quizzed on the logic of selling on a player performing so well in England’s second tier, but responded: “I wasn’t aware we were entering negotiations to sell him at all.”
The 28-year-old has featured 12 times for Nigel Adkins’ side this season, with Southampton sitting five points clear at the top of the Championship table.
Hooiveld failed to make an impact at Celtic, having joined from AIK Solna in January 2010, and Lennon says it may be the case the player has no intention of trying again to hold down a place in Glasgow.
“We’ve given him time to get some football and, by all accounts, things are going very well at Southampton.
“We are monitoring his current situation. But it may come to the case he may not want to come back. He might see his future elsewhere. Then we’ll enter negotiations.”