Celtic linked with Dundee United striker David Goodwillie

CELTIC are ready to battle it out with Rangers in the race to sign Dundee United striker David Goodwillie.

Ibrox manager Ally McCoist is a long-time admirer of the 22-year-old and will make a bid for the Scotland international this summer.

But Celtic boss Neil Lennon could nip in first to snap up the highlyrated hitman – despite slamming Goodwillie after the Arabs star publicly admitted he wanted Gers to win the title.

Goodwillie hit 18 goals this season and completed a clean sweep of the country’s Young Player of the Year awards when he lifted the Scottish Football Writers’ trophy on Sunday.

He is also attracting interest from Birmingham, Sunderland and Bristol City among others but now Glasgow’s big two are expected to lead the chase for his signature.

The Hoops are understood to have asked Goodwillie’s representatives to keep them up-to-date with developments during the close season.

The Tangerines, who recently secured their prize asset on a new deal through to 2013, are looking to rake in at least £2million for the forward.