NEW injury trouble for James Forrest, more boardroom drama at Rangers, and Tony Watt’s loan spell in Belgium takes another turn, plus more news and video from across the SPFL in Wednesday’s Rumour Mill
James Forrest hit by new injury woe
CELTIC attacker James Forrest faces another injury lay-off after picking up his latest knock on Scotland duty.
Forrest picked up a groin injury in training ahead of Scotland’s 1-0 win over Poland last week, and will be out of action for up to four weeks.
The winger has suffered a spate of injuries this season, and was hospitalised last September with a mystery virus ahead of his side’s clash with AC Milan. (Record)
Rangers fans’ chiefs ‘threatened’
THE heads of some of the largest Rangers fan groups have claimed that they have been threatened over their continued questioning of the current board.
Chris Graham of the Union of Fans group told the Record: “I’ve received a couple of fairly threatening legal letters. Maybe they hoped it would stop me telling the truth.” Craig Houston of the Sons of Struth group also told the Record of legal threats made.
The ongoing boardroom saga at Rangers took another twist yesterday when the club cut their ties with Jack Irvine’s PR company, Media House International. (Record)
Hibs’ Butcher backs Inverness ‘yokels’
TERRY Butcher has claimed that his former side Inverness Caledonian Thistle have been hard done by in the build-up to their League Cup final.
Opponents Aberdeen will have been off-duty for eight days come Sunday’s final, while Caley take on Hibs this evening.
Butcher said: “It seems very unfair... I experienced it all the time in Inverness: there is always the feeling that you are the outsiders, the country yokels, the teuchters. It will probably always be that way.” (Herald)
Tony Watt vents at Lierse SK boss - again
ON-LOAN Celtic striker Tony Watt has hit out at Lierse SK manager Stanley Menzo, in the latest incident in his colourful loan spell in Belgium.
Watt said: “Whenever we lose I get the blame, and they always say I do things wrong. At Ostend last month I just played for 20 minutes, yet Menzo blamed me.
“I can’t score goals if I am sitting on the bench. Menzo has two sets of rules. But you can’t have different rules for different players. He clearly doesn’t like me.” (Scotsman)
Italians in for Gavin Gunning
PALERMO have reportedly joined the hunt for Dundee United defender Gavin Gunning.
The Rosanero are preparing for their impending promotion to Serie A and are keen on the Irishman, who is out of contract this summer. Rangers and Celtic have also been linked with the 23-year-old stopper.
In other news, United are aiming to pick up 20,000 tickets for their Scottish Cup semi-final at Ibrox. (Express)
Give Locke a rest, says Sergio
FORMER Hearts boss Paolo Sergio has given his backing to current Tynecastle manager Gary Locke.
Sergio said: “It’s very unfair to criticise. Lockey is doing a fantastic job. All over the world, football clubs bring to their first team two, three, or four young players... this was not the case at Hearts.
“There are lots of young players and they have to take responsibility in their first year. It’s been very hard to get results like this.” (Herald)
SPFL on YouTube - Goals, skills and highlights
• 12 goals in the two Scottish Premiership games this weekend, but none better than Lionel Ainsworth’s strike for Motherwell against Hibernian at Easter Road. Watch here
• DUTCH defender Jeroen Tesselaar shows a piece of jaw-dropping skill to elude his marker and set up Michael Gardyne to score his first ever goal for Kilmarnock during the 4-2 win over Hearts at Rugby Park. Watch here
• THE competition for February’s Goal of the Month Competition is still live! The competition closes at noon on Friday, with one random voter winning a SPFL Mitre match ball. To vote, comment on the YouTube video here
Kilmarnock eased the pressure at the bottom of the SPFL Scottish Premiership as Kris Boyd fired them to a crucial 4-2 win over Hearts at Rugby Park. Allan Johnston’s men hadn’t won for five matches but Boyd struck twice and Michael Gardyne scored his first goal for the club as they picked up a much-needed three points. Danny Wilson’s own goal had given the hosts the lead while the Jambos replied through Sam Nicholson and Dale Carrick.
Motherwell and Hibernian have a history of producing goal-feasts when they meet and they didn’t disappoint as they shared the points in a 6-goal thriller at Easter Road in the SPFL Scottish Premiership. John Sutton and Lionel Ainsworth gave the visitors a cushion but Terry Butcher’s men hit back through Jordan Forster, Paul Hanlon and Paul Heffernan before Sutton struck again at the death to rescue a point.