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Leeds United are expected to make an official approach to Celtic to request permission to speak to Martin O’Neill about the vacant manager’s position at Elland Road.

After discussing the vacancy over the weekend the Leeds board have produced a shortlist of candidates O’Neill their preferred candidate to replace David O’Leary who was sacked by the club last week.

However, Celtic have already stated that they will do everything in their power to persuade O’Neill to remain at Parkhead.

“There has been no approach to us – and we certainly wouldn’t welcome one,” said chairman Brian Quinn.

“Martin is an honourable man, so there’s nothing to speak about,’ he added. “Of course I am concerned. But Martin has always honoured his contracts in the past,” he said.

Should Leeds fail in their approach, South Korea coach Guus Hiddink is believed to be their next target. Other coaches linked with the post include former England boss Terry Venables, Republic of Ireland coach Mick McCarthy and Middlesbrough manager Steve McClaren.

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