Celtic have accepted an offer from Middlesbrough for Gary Caldwell and Barry Robson.
Boro boss Gordon Strachan, who signed both players while in charge at Parkhead, will now attempt to persuade the Scotland duo to join him on Teesside.
It is also understood Strachan could land Willo Flood and Chris Killen on loan, neither of whom are in the first-team picture at Parkhead.
The 52-year-old, who quit Parkhead in the summer, said: “We are trying hard to bring in people who can lead and people who want to be led.
“I want to bring in leaders and men —that's hugely important now. I have to have people who I know, players I know who are men, who are leaders, and who know about playing at this level.
“There will not be any foreigners coming in this time, that's for sure.
“We have to add that wee bit of enthusiasm and knowledge.”
Robson's Celtic deal runs until 2011 but Caldwell is out of contract in the summer and talks over extending his stay at Parkhead ended in failure.
Meanwhile, the Hoops are running the rule over AIK Stockholm defender Jos Hooiveld, according to the player's agent.
Celtic could use the cash gained from the sale of Caldwell and Robson to fund a move for 26-year-old Hooiveld, whose agent Alex Kroes said: “He has had a very good last two years of his career.
“He is really going step by step quickly forward.
“Celtic is a bigger club than AIK. AIK still is a big club, they play weekly for 35,000 people.
“It's a great club, they won the cup last year, they won the league title but, of course, Celtic is another step forward in his career.
“If a move could happen and things become concrete, it would be very good for both Celtic and for the player.”