Rumour Mill: King calls Warburton ‘thin-skinned’ | Rangers interview Rae | Deila on Caixinha

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Mark Warburton begged the Rangers board to sign Joey Barton and Philippe Senderos and then couldn’t handle them, according to Dave King; Alex Rae has been the latest ex-Rangers player to be interviewed by Pedro Caixinha, and Ronny Deila believes Pedro Caixinha will have it easier than he did in Scottish football.

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Mark Warburton has been criticised by former boss Dave King. Picture: John Devlin

Mark Warburton has been criticised by former boss Dave King. Picture: John Devlin

King criticises Warburton

Dave King has called Mark Warburton “thin-skinned” and suggests the former manager couldn’t handle the “big personalities” of Joey Barton and Philippe Senderos. King insists Warburton begged the board to sign the experienced duo last summer, both of whom proved ineffective, with Barton exiting the club after just six months. King also believed Warburton wasn’t up to the task of handling the media pressure in Glasgow. (Various)

- King insists Rangers will have to challenge for the Ladbrokes Premiership title in Pedro Caixinha’s first season in charge. The South African-based businessman wants his new head coach to significantly decrease the 33-point gap which currently exists between the sides. (The Herald)

Rangers interview Rae

Alex Rae is the latest former Rangers player to interview for the No.3 role in Pedro Caixinha’s management staff. The new Portuguese boss wants to have a local coach with a connection to Ibrox and the wider community. Barry Ferguson, John Brown and Peter Lovenkrands are also in the frame. Rae started the season as manager of St Mirren but was sacked in the autumn. (Daily Record)

- Ex-Ibrox defender Bob Malcolm has backed Barry Ferguson to shine in the role, if he is offered it, and insists the club’s former captain will not be a simple yes man. (Daily Record)

Deila: Caixinha has it easier

Ex-Celtic boss Ronny Deila believes Pedro Caixinha is coming into an easier situation at Rangers than the one he faced at Parkhead. Deila succeeded Neil Lennon, who’d won three league titles in a row before the Norwegian took charge. Seeing as Caixinha is taking over a side third in the table, and doesn’t have to maintain high standards of winning, Deila feels the Portuguese coach has come into a less pressurised environment. (Evening Times)

Scotland ‘may as well wear hoops’

Barry Ferguson has joked Scotland are so reliant on Celtic’s stars that they may as well wear green and white hoops when the Tartan Army take on Slovenia this Sunday. Craig Gordon, Kieran Tierney, Stuart Armstrong, Scott Brown, James Forrest and Leigh Griffiths are all in contention for a starting place at Hampden, with Griffiths the only member of that quintet who played some part in the dismal 1-1 draw with Canada in midweek. (Daily Record)

Gordon eyes 50 caps

Craig Gordon will move a step closer to the Scotland Hall of Fame if he plays against Slovenia on Sunday – something he seemed destined never to achieve after three years lost to an injury that almost forced him to quit altogether in 2013. The 3-0 loss to England at Wembley was the 34-year-old’s first competitive start for his country in seven years. It also moved him on to 45 caps. Now, emboldened by a new three-year Celtic contract, Gordon wants to reach the landmark of 50 caps. (The Scotsman)

Rangers confident of new deal

Rangers could strike a new agreement with Sports Direct which would allow their supporters to purchase fully-endorsed club merchandise again in time for next season, according to Dave King. The club’s chairman believes his differences with the retail giant’s owner Mike Ashley, who also has a 9 per cent stake in Rangers, can be resolved “soon” despite ongoing court proceedings over the controversial deal struck by former Ibrox chief executive Charles Green. (The Scotsman)

Surreal situation for Lennon

Hibs manager Neil Lennon has admitted to finding himself in a surreal situation, facing one of the Edinburgh club’s biggest games of the season but stripped of two of his key players because of international commitments. The Easter Road side meet Falkirk at home tomorrow without Scotland midfielder John McGinn and goalkeeper Ofir Marciano. (The Scotsman)

Kennedy leaves Motherwell

Kieran Kennedy has left Motherwell by mutual consent after expressing an interest in rebuilding his career south of the border. Kennedy, 23, hasn’t played since the final game of last season due to a series of injuries and will now look to sign for a team in England’s semi-professional ranks. (Motherwell FC)

Gallacher laments Barcelona link

Tony Gallacher admits a link between the Falkirk youngster and Catalan giants Barcelona threw him off stride as he looks to develop with the Ladbrokes Championship side. Gallacher says he found the attention “pressurising” with critics scrutinising his every move on the park, looking for a flaw to dispel the rumours that Barca were interested in signing him. (Scottish Sun)