Celtic agree £2m fee for Omer Damari and £1m for Kenya midfielder Victor Wanyama

CELTIC are closing in on the signing of Israeli international striker Omer Damari after agreeing a £2 million deal in principle with his current club Maccabi Petah Tikva for the highly-rated 22-year-old.

The Parkhead club have also agreed a fee, understood to be around 1m, with Belgian club Germinal Beerschot for Kenyan international midfielder Victor Wanyama. The recruitment of both players is subject to passing a medical and securing a work permit.

Damari is expected to arrive in Glasgow next week. He has still to agree personal terms with Celtic, but according to Maccabi Petah Tikva chairman Amos Luzon that is little more than a formality.

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Luzon says Celtic have agreed to pay 2m for Damari with a further 30 per cent sell on clause for the Israeli Premier League club. It is understood Celtic chief executive Peter Lawwell met Luzon in London on Wednesday to negotiate the transfer.

"We have agreed everything with Celtic," said Luzon. "But the player is still to agree personal terms with the club. Next week, I believe the deal can be completed. It is 90 per cent done - we have just a few last things to close.

"We've already moved the draft contract and the signature is only a procedural matter. I'm very happy for Omer to go to Celtic because I will never stop any of my players joining a big club in Europe. When Celtic sell him on in one, two or three years time, then we will get a lot of money because I'm sure he will be worth 10m, minimum, by then.

"This is one of Israeli football's biggest transfers. For my club, this deal is unprecedented. I'm happy for Omer and for Israeli football. Maccabi Tel Aviv and Hapoel Tel Aviv, the big clubs in Israel, wanted Omer, but he wanted to go to Celtic."

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Damari, who is being offered a three-year contract by Celtic, was influenced by Beram Kayal, his Israeli international team-mate, who made such a positive impression during his first season with the Parkhead club.

"Beram told Omer just to come to Celtic," Luzon told STV. "Beram made him crazy when they met each other in the national team. He said it is a big club, it's a good club, the people are good, the manager is very good. That's why the player came to Celtic and not to other clubs."

Damari, who scored 15 goals for Maccabi Petah Tikva as they finished eighth in the Israeli Premier League last season, has been capped twice by Israel so far.He scored twice on his debut, in a 3-2 friendly win over Iceland last November before making his first competitive appearance in a 2-1 Euro 2012 qualifier against Latvia in March.

He will not qualify automatically for a UK work permit, but Celtic will have little difficulty in persuading an appeals panel of his potential benefit to Scottish football. Celtic will face a similar process with Wanyama, capped 11 times by Kenya.

Neither Damari or Wanyama are expected to be recruited in time to join Celtic on their pre-season tour of Australia which kicks off tomorrow against Central Coast Mariners in Sydney.

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