Rumour Mill: Aston Villa want Stefan Johansen | Ann Budge fumes at SPFL | Scottish football draft?

Stefan Johansen. Picture: SNS
Stefan Johansen. Picture: SNS
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Aston Villa consider £5m move for Stefan Johansen, Hearts owner Ann Budge is unhappy with league investigation into match at Tynecastle, and could Lithuanian side offer Old Firm a route into England?

Stefan Johansen a target for Aston Villa

A bid by the Lithuanian champions could see the Old Firm find a way into the English leagues. Picture: John Devlin

A bid by the Lithuanian champions could see the Old Firm find a way into the English leagues. Picture: John Devlin

Celtic midfielder Stefan Johansen is a target for Aston Villa who are considering bidding £5m for the Parkhead player.

Johansen has 18 months on his contract and is also being tracked by a number of German clubs. Celtic have a number of players vying to fill the Number 10 shirt including Kris Commons and Tom Rogic. (Sun)

Scottish football considers draft system

The SFA have put forward proposals for a American sports-style draft system to be implemented in Scottish football.

The idea has been backed by national team boss Gordon Strachan and would see each side give up five under-20’s players for a lower league draft pot.

It is not known whether these would be permanent moves or loan deals as further details have yet to emerge. (BBC Sport)

East Kilbride hit Scottish Cup jackpot

East Kilbride will take on Celtic in the last 16 of the Scottish Cup after defeating Lothian Thistle 2 - 0.

The victory ensures at £150,00 pay day for the Lowland League outfit when they take on the Glasgow giants at their 500 capacity K-Park. (The Scotsman)

Hamilton boss says job is safe

Hamilton boss Martin Canning says his job is safe despite losing 8 - 1 to Celtic at Parkhead this week. The Sun reports that there are no plans to replace Canning despite his side going without a win for their last eight matches. (Sun)

Mackay-Steven in treble rallying call

Gary Mackay-Steven says Celtic will dish out more hammerings like the 8 - 1 they dished out to Hamilton this week as they look to secure a domestic treble. (The Scotsman)

- Carlton Cole says a treble with Celtic would be the ideal end to his career

Fans hit out at facial recognition cameras

Supporters groups have reacted with dismay over plans to bring in facial recognition cameras warning that they will drive fans away from games.

The SPFL board is in talks with the Scottish Government to set up the high-tech cameras at every ground as part of a £4m plan. (Record)

Linlithgow Rose chief hits out at fans

JIM Harkins has criticised fans who let off smoke bombs during his side’s Scottish Cup tie against Forfar resulting in the match being held up and eventually abandoned when the flood lights failed.

The East of Scotland side say they will carry out their own investigation. (Record)

Old Firm to England?

THE idea of Rangers and Celtic joining the English Premier League has been thrust into the limelight once again after it was revealed Lithuanian champions FK Zalgiris have applied to UEFA to join the Polish league, insisting it is a higher standard.

Both Mark Warburton and Ronny Deila have previously expressed support for the idea of their respective clubs playing in England. (Scottish Sun)

Hoops face battle for Crepulja

CELTIC could face a late intervention from Serie A side Chievo Verona as they bid to land Ljuban Crepulja from Slaven Beluga.

The Italian side are also keen on the holding midfielder, who has held talks with Celtic. (Various)

Hibs set to take Highland League forward on trial

HIBS are reportedly keen to take Strathspey Thistle striker Josh Peters on trial.

The 19-year-old has had a trial spell with Hamilton and has been scouted by Raith Rovers and Ross County.

Strathspey boss Brian Grant believes Peters, who has scored 13 goals this season, can still get better. (P&J)

SPFL to probe fans’ conduct

THE Scottish Professional Football League (SPFL) is to probe supporters’ conduct at two recent matches.

A statement said the SPFL will review crowd behaviour at the Rangers v Hibernian and Hearts v Dundee United matches - believed to relate to ‘inappropriate singing’ and ‘segregation issues’ respectively.

Hearts owner Ann Budge is said to be furious with the announcement her club was under investigation. The believed incident took place in the away end as a United supporter became involved in an incident with a steward. (Daily Record/The Scotsman)

Gets keen to add player before Morton encounter

MARK Warburton has said he is hopeful of signing a player before Rangers take on Morton.

The Gers boss, who has been pursuing St Johnstone forward Michael O’Halloran, said: “I’m very hopeful we will being in a player. We’re making good progress.” (The Scotsman)

Riordan’s York trial a wash-out

DEREK Riordan’s hopes of appearing as a trials for York City in a regional cup match were scuppered after the game was rained off.

Riordan, formerly of Hibs, Celtic and East Fife, was taken on trial by Minstermen boss Jackie McNamara. (The Scotsman)

NEWS IN BRIEF

• Former Rangers winger Brian Laudrup has backed new Celtic signing Erik Sviatchenko to be a success at the Parkhead club

• Kilmarnock are keen on signing Sheffield United defender Kieron Freeman

• Aberdeen say their connection with Liverpool - which has seen a number of Anfield players arrive at Pittodrie - will keep going despite the departure of Brendan Rodgers

• Ryan Stevenson has left Partick Thistle by mutual consent

• Martyn Waghorn has revealed the best player he has played alongside is Andy Cole

• Ex-Hibs winger Kevin Harper, 40, has come out of retirement to play for Thorniewood United

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