Manninger rejected Bhoys
By Adam Marshall
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
The protracted transfer has been wrapped up in time for the Austrian international to link up with his new club for pre-season training.
"It was purely a sporting decision," said Feisal Kashmiri.
"Financially, the offer from Celtic was better but Alex wanted absolutely to go to Spain."
The 25-year-old has signed a four-year deal with the Catalan club, after spending last term on loan at Fiorentina.
Meanwhile, Espanyol striker Raul Tamudo insists he is looking forward to leading the side next season, despite the firm interest from Sunderland.
"I will be with Espanyol next season," he affirmed.
"We have signed people with much quality and experience who will be good for the team."
Black Cats boss Peter Reid is hoping to convince the Spanish international to head for Wearside although rumours persist that he has not yet given up completely on the idea of luring Robbie Keane north.