JON DALY wants to kick-start his season, Hibs look forward to their trip to Ibrox, and Celtic are ready to go again in the Europa League group stages.
Fit-again Rangers striker Jon Daly believes he and Kris Boyd would make an effective partnership for the Ibrox club. Daly was last season’s top goalscorer, but has yet to start a match this campaign after injuring his knee during pre-season. He’s in contention to earn that maiden appearance in the first XI for tonight’s clash against Hibs, but faces stiff competition from Dean Shiels who scored in Rangers’ last match, a 3-1 League Cup win at Falkirk. (Daily Express)
• Ally McCoist believes there is little difference in quality between the bottom half of the top flight and teams in the Scottish Championship. The Rangers manager also offered the opinion that, on their day, second tier squads would even have a chance at upsetting the likes of Celtic, Aberdeen and Dundee United, citing the chances spurned by Hearts in their League Cup meeting with Celtic as evidence.
• Meanwhile, McCoist has praised the work ethic of Dean Shiels and how the once forgotten attacker has grabbed his chance to impress back in the first team with a strong showing against Falkirk.
Hibs look to improve fortunes
Hibs manager Alan Stubbs has called on his players to build on their impressive win against Ross County in midweek. Despite winning only two of their first six Scottish Championship games, Hibs managed to stun their top flight hosts with a 2-0 victory courtesy of a Dominique Malonga double. Stubbs was particularly pleased with the improvement in defence and they’ll need to continue such form when they travel to Ibrox tonight. (Daily Express)
• Defender David Gray is relishing the trip to Rangers despite Hibs already losing there this season. The right-back signed for the club from Burton Albion in the summer, and with over 30,000 people expected to be at Ibrox tonight it’s these kind of big game occasions that convinced Gray to return north of the border (The Scotsman).
Celtic look ahead to Europa League
Stefan Johansen believes Celtic should be aiming for maximum points from their three home Europa League group matches. The Scottish champions earned a respectable 1-1 draw from their opening game against top seeded Red Bull Salzburg, but Johansen knows they’ll have to make their home field advantage count if they are to reach the knockout stages. (The Scotsman)
• Striker John Guidetti has backed his teammates to star against Zagreb in his absence. The on-loan Manchester City player’s move to Glasgow was finalised after the Europa League squad registration deadline, meaning he can’t feature in any of the group matches. However, Guidetti believes fellow new signing Stefan Scepovic will shine in his absence. (BBC)
Neilson still not content
Hearts boss Robbie Neilson was not 100 per cent satisfied with his team’s performance on Sunday despite hammering Livingston 5-0 at Tynecastle. Neilson bemoaned a lack of urgency in the final third and a few missed chances which could have led to a greater margin of victory. (Sunday Herald)
Saints mystery man
St Johnstone will welcome a trialist this week as manager Tommy Wright looks to bring in a replacement for long term injury casualty Steven MacLean. However, the manager will not name the mystery player for fear of losing him to a rival club. (The Herald)