SCOTLAND look to snap up England cap Caulker, Celtic set their sights on Zhang Xixhe, Terry Butcher prepares to take over at Hibs, and Rangers may have found their new CEO, plus the latest SPFL and international news in Tuesday’s Rumour Mill
Steven Caulker wanted by Scotland
GORDON Strachan is set to make an audacious bid to convince Cardiff centre-back Steven Caulker to commit his international future to Scotland.
The 21-year-old has represented England at age-group level as well as playing in a friendly against Sweden, scoring a debut goal.
However, Caulker is thought to be out of the running for the England squad for the 2014 World Cup, and Strachan is reportedly set to contact the defender, who qualifies for Scotland through his grandmother. (Mail)
Celtic after Chinese international Zhang Xixhe
ZHANG Xizhe could be on his way to Celtic, with chief executive Peter Lawwell keen to snap up a player he describes as “phenomenal”.
Lawwell said: “(Zhang) would need to prove himself. Next year, we will return to Beijing to discuss matters relating to business cooperation and when the time is right, we will invite Zhang to join the team.”
The midfielder has been capped seven times by the Chinese national side. Lawwell was part of the delegation which signed a £20m deal to show SPFL games on a Chinese network. (Herald)
Bedoya: Time at Ibrox was tough
USA international Alejandro Bedoya has revealed that his brief spell at Rangers was like nothing else he has ever experienced.
Bedoya arrived shortly before Rangers went into administration, and left for Helsingborg several months later.
He said: “The club was in a mess and I don’t care what people say, it affected the team.
“Going to training not knowing what was going to happen, hearing new things every day, it affected you mentally.” (Sun)
Terry Butcher: Hibs to unveil new boss, ICT issue ‘hands-off’ call
• TERRY Butcher and Maurice Malpas will be officially presented as Hibernian’s new management team this afternoon.
Hibs and Inverness Caley Thistle thrashed out a compensation deal last night, with the Highland club reportedly receiving a six-figure payment from Easter Road. (Scotsman)
• CALEY chairman Kenny Cameron has warned Hibernian that they will be unable to cherry-pick the best of the Thistle squad in the January transfer window.
Cameron said: “We have a special group of players here and we intend to keep them at the club.” (P&J)
Scotland v USA: Fletcher won’t walk back into team, US expect win
BARRY Bannan believes that Steven Fletcher will have his work cut out to get back in the Scotland team.
Steven Naismith started up front for each of Scotland’s last two games, with Gordon Strachan’s men winning both.
Talking ahead of Friday’s game with the USA, Bannan said: “The boys that have been here when (Fletcher) was injured have been brilliant. Naisy and Leigh Griffiths have been brilliant so it’s going to be hard for Fletch to get in because there is competition for places.”
• America expects a win against Scotland, according to former Scotland cap Stevie Nicol.
Nicol, now a pundit on US TV, says that the American public “will be expecting another easy victory”. (Express)
• Former Rangers winger DaMarcus Beasley has been included in Jurgen Klinsmann’s USA squad, alongside Bedoya. (BBC)
HEARTS’ parent company Ubig finally entered administration yesterday, potentially paving the way for the Foundation of Hearts’ planned takeover bid.
With Ubig in administration, the company’s court-appointed bosses can approve the CVA needed for the fans’ group to take charge at Tynecastle. (Scotsman)
Rangers in talks over Dundee CEO
SCOT Gardiner has been given permission to speak to Rangers with a view to becoming the club’s new chief executive.
Gardiner is set to meet the club’s two remaining directors Brian Stockbridge and James Easdale, as well as acting chairman David Somers.
The current Dundee chief executive has held previous roles in the commercial ranks at Ibrox. (Record)
Messi out of Celtic clash
ARGENTINE striker Lionel Messi will miss Barcelona’s Champions League clash with Celtic next month.
Messi is out for up to two months with a hamstring injury.