HEARTS are searching for a new manager, while the fall-out continues from the Rangers EBT report. All this and more in today’s Rumour Mill
The now-vacant Hearts job is the subject of a huge amount of speculation. Gary Locke is in charge of the side at present, but a long list of candidates has emerged for the role. Former Hearts midfielder Paul Hartley is “the initial front-runner” according to the Mail, but the paper also claims that Cowdenbeath’s Colin Cameron and former Scotland boss Craig Levein are in the hunt.
The Record make Cameron and Hartley joint 4-1 favourites, with highland duo Terry Butcher and Derek Adams long-shots for the role. However, the Express believe that Gorgie legends Allan Johnston and Sandy Clark could be the men for the job.
Meanwhile, Vladimir Romanov is to give up on his life as Hearts chairman and banker - to become a taxi driver. Romanov said that after the demise of his Ukio Bankas banking operation, he was left with “the money in (my) pocket”. (Record)
Ally McCoist has gone on the offensive over the EBT investigation, calling it an insult to the club.
McCoist said: “I found the whole approach to this matter by the SPL utterly bizarre and misguided.
“It’s been niggling away at all our minds for a long time now.” (Sun)
It also emerged that the legal team for the EBT investigation cost Rangers £500,000 - double the fine they were served by Lord Nimmo-Smith.
Alastair Johnston, the former Rangers chairman who presided over some of Rangers’ use of EBTs, has welcomed Lord Nimmo-Smith’s verdict and now wants attention to turn to Craig Whyte.
Johnston, chairman at Ibrox from 2009 to 2011, said: “The most important thing is the titles have been retained and it’s time to move forward, although only to some extent.
“There’s still some unfinished business with Whyte and the evil he perpetrated on the club.” (Record)
Dunfermline players ‘to strike’
Dunfermline’s beleaguered players are to strike over their ongoing pay row with the club. The players received just a fifth of January’s cash, in the fifth consecutive month they have been underpaid.
One unnamed Dunfermline player told the Record: “Refusing to play is an option which looks to be the only one open to us.” (Record)
Caley Thistle to vote for 12-12-18
Terry Butcher will admit defeat over SPL reconstruction plans, after Inverness CT chairman Kenny Cameron made it clear that he would vote in favour of the plans which boss Butcher is against.
Butcher said: “Our club is not going to vote against this because Kenny, our chairman, is for it.
“We haven’t fallen out over this, but there is a disagreement.” (Various)
North is where power is, say County boss
Scottish football power could rest in the north for the considerable future, according to Ross County boss Derek Adams.
“For years people have been disrespectful to the Highland football clubs, talking about not wanting to play here or travel here.
“I am afraid they will have to get used to it, hopefully long-term for both clubs.
“The power has changed a bit... to the North now.
“You have Aberdeen, St Johnstone, Dundee, Dundee United all in the SPL (as well).” (Press and Journal)
Bring in managerial code of conduct, say Managers’ Association
The Scottish managers’ union have demanded a new code of conduct from the SFA to protect the livelihoods of the country’s bosses from over-zealous chairmen.
The SMCA call follows the terminations of Hearts’ John McGlynn and Dundee’s Barry Smith in the last two weeks.
“The SFA should be drawing up a code of conduct between the the chairmen of clubs, the manager and the SFA.
“It would stop this kind of thing and it could protect clubs against managers who misbehave.” (Record)
Brown must go, says Nicholas
Charlie Nicholas says Aberdeen must ditch Craig Brown at the end of the season.
The former Aberdeen man says the manager has failed to do enough with the resources available, and that a top-six finish seems beyond the team. (Express)
IN OTHER NEWS
• John Collins has quit as director of football at Livingston, just hours after manager Gareth Evans was sacked by the club.
• St Mirren captain Jim Goodwin could miss out on tomorrow’ Scottish Cup quarter-final against Celtic. Goodwin is struggling with a calf injury.
• St Mirren’s Graham Carey has compared himself to Tottenham’s Gareth Bale - but says he still has a long way to go to match the Welsh star. Carey said: “I have to give him the nod, although we have a similar technique.”