Rosenborg keen to hold onto Celtic target Pål André Helland; Ronny Deila and Peter Lawwell hold crunch talks after Dons defeat and Imran Ahmad vows not to return to Scotland
Rosenborg keen to keep Celtic target Helland
ROSENBORG boss Kare Ingebrigtsen has vowed to hold onto highly-rated winger Pål André Helland, despite reported interest from Celtic.
The 25-year-old winger has scored 22 goals in all competitions in 2015 and is in line for a call-up to the Norway squad ahead of Euro 2016, with Norwegian press reporting that Celtic have sent scouts to run the rule over Helland.
But Ingebrigtsen doesn’t want to lose Helland, even though he admitted he can see why clubs are taking an interest in the ex-Hodd wideman. (Adressa / Dagbladet)
Hoops scouts take in Benfica, Malmo matches
CELTIC scouts were reportedly seen attending the match between Malmo and Elfsborg at the weekend, with further reports that the Hoops had sent men to Portugal to take in Benfica v Belenenses.
The Celtic representatives could have been watching 20-year-old defender Andreas Vindheim, who has made eight appearances for Malmo this season. (Various)
Lawwell met Deila after Dons defeat
CELTIC chief Peter Lawwell met with Ronny Deila at Lennoxtown barely 24 hours after Celtic’s loss to Aberdeen, it has been reported.
Even though Deila’s position is not thought to be under threat, it is believed that the Champions League exit in Sweden and subsequent loss to 10-man Aberdeen rang alarm bells at Celtic Park, with Lawwell understood to have asked Deila for his thoughts on how to get Celtic back on track. (The Sun)
Simunovic set for Dutch baptism of fire
CELTIC coach John Kennedy has indicated that new signing Jozo Simunovic is in line to make his debut against Ajax on Thursday.
The £5.5m Croatian stopper didn’t feature at Pittodrie but could make his bow in Amsterdam. (The Sun)
Griffiths denies ref row
LEIGH Griffiths has denied slamming referee Craig Thomson after Celtic’s 2-1 reversal at Pittodrie insisting: “I have total respect for him as a referee and a man.”
Griffiths was reported to be facing an SFA showdown after criticising Thomson for not sending off Dons defender Andrew Considine.
But Griffiths claimed: “I didn’t say [Thomson] was biased or not good at his job. All I meant was with a home team, the atmosphere, the crowd and [Aberdeen] players going in on him, a referee can be put in a difficult position to make a decision to show a red card.” (Various)
Ahmad: I won’t come back to Scotland
EX-Rangers director Imran Ahmad has vowed not to return to Scotland - after a warrant was issued to detain the 45-year-old.
The former commercial chief at Ibrox has refused to set foot back in the UK after Craig Whyte, Charles Green, Paul Clark and David Whitehouse were lifted by cops probing the takeover of Rangers in 2012.
And Ahmad, currently working overseas, claims he hasn’t received any letters from the Crown Office confirming he would not be detained if he returned to Scotland.
He said: “I was promised it would confirm I would not be arrested and could attend court to answer the warrant petition. I’ve decided to remain overseas.” (Various)
Durrant: Ibrox demotion was ‘boot in the balls’
IAN Durrant has hailed the new regime at Ibrox, admitting that his demotion from first-team coach was a ‘boot in the balls’.
One of just two surviving employees from Ally McCoist’s time in charge, Durrant was told by Kenny McDowall that the previous board wanted him demoted and ordered to work with the development league squad.
Durrant said: “You could say it was a lack of respect. Kenny McDowall was told by certain board members that I was to be demoted and he phoned me.
“I was disappointed at the time by the manner of how it happened. For what I’d given the club, I’d have thought they could have taken five minutes to come and tell me I was being demoted, rather than getting a telephone call.” (The Scotsman)
NEWS IN BRIEF
• US Attorney General Loretta Lynch has stated that there could be further arrests in the FIFA corruption probe
• Ex-Dundee United boss Gordon Chisholm reckons Jackie McNamara is being forced to play Tannadice youngsters before they’re ready
• Hamilton boss Martin Canning believes Accies are capable of stopping the Aberdeen juggernaut in its tracks when they meet
• Jonny Hayes has offered to pay the £1,000 appeal costs as he is so convinced he didn’t deserve a red card against Celtic
• Ex-Hearts, Rangers and Inverness CT midfielder Ian Black has signed a two-year deal with League One outfit Shrewsbury, joining ex-Hibs striker James Collins
• Steven MacLean won’t be risked against Kilmarnock on the Rugby Park plastic pitch due to his history of knee problems, St Johnstone boss Tommy Wright has confirmed