Kris Boyd in line for shock return to Kilmarnock as Celtic starlet Liam Henderson linked with loan move to Norwegian side and Steven Fletcher revels in hat-trick as Scotland sweep Gibraltar aside
Boyd set for Killie return
KRIS Boyd could be in line for a shock return to Kilmarnock, with interim Rugby Park boss Gary Locke set to be appointed on a permanent basis in the next few days.
Talks between the ex-Hearts defender and Killie chairman Michael Johnston are believed to be at an advanced stage - and Locke is reportedly keen on taking Boyd back to Ayrshire as part of a new-look management team.
Boyd has been left out of the Rangers squad for the past two weeks, with Locke reportedly trying to convince him to return to Rugby Park with a coaching role tacked on.
The former Kilmarnock, Portland Timbers and Middlesbrough striker’s contract is up in May - but Stuart McCall has insisted the 31-year-old still has a part to play at Ibrox. (Daily Record)
Henderson linked with Rosenborg loan
CELTIC starlet Liam Henderson could be on his way to Norway after it emerged Tippeligaen side Rosenborg are keen on taking the 18-year-old on loan.
Henderson, who has made 15 appearances for the Hoops this season, has scored once and is currently in Austria with Scotland Under-19s.
But it is understood Ronny Deila has given Rosenborg the go-ahead to take the midfielder on loan - but an injury picked up by Nir Bitton on international duty may see Henderson remain in Glasgow for cover. (Daily Record)
Fletch delight after hat-trick ends drought
STEVEN Fletcher thanked Gordon Strachan for standing by him after he ended his goal drought with a hat-trick against Gibraltar.
Fletcher had only scored one goal in 19 matches for his country before hitting a treble in Scotland’s 6-1 European Championship qualifying win at Hampden.
And he has also been suffering at club level, having not scored for Sunderland since hitting two against Crystal Palace on November 3.
“It meant a lot that he stuck with me, but that’s the way he is,” Fletcher said, adding: “I’m delighted to have repaid a bit of that faith.”
Fletcher’s only previous international goal came in a 2-1 World Cup qualifying victory over Iceland six years ago but he is now the first Scotland player to score a hat-trick since Colin Stein hit four against Cyprus in 1969. (Various)
Izaguirre slammed by ex-Honduras coach
EMILIO Izaguirre has been criticised by a former manager of the Honduran national side, who claims the Celtic full-back is treating playing for his country as a holiday.
Izaguirre, who has more than 70 caps for his country, was part of the team that lost 3-1 to French Guiana in the first leg of the Gold Cup play-off.
And former Honduras boss Christopher Rocholi said: “It is very difficult to explain why Izaguirre performs so badly for Honduras. Perhaps he just uses these games as a holiday.” (The Sun)
Lambert ‘tried to sign Gauld for Villa’
PAUL Lambert has revealed that he tried to sign Ryan Gauld during his time as Aston Villa boss, but was unwilling to meet Dundee United’s £3 million asking fee for the teenager.
The midfielder, dubbed ‘mini Messi’ eventually moved to Sporting Lisbon in Portugal.
Lambert said: “We had heard everyone raving about him so I went to watch him.
“He ended up moving for £3 million, but at Villa at that time we could not do that for a young kid. We would have had to send him on loan. If we paid £3 million for someone he’d need to be first-team.” (The Sun)
Neilson targets top-six finish in Premiership
HEARTS head coach Robbie Neilson has targeted a top-six finish in the Scottish Premiership next season after clinching the Championship title and promotion with games to spare.
Hearts romped to the second-tier title, and have so far lost just one league match - against Falkirk - in their march to the Championship flag.
And Neilson believes a top-six finish is not out of the realms of possibility for the Jambos on their return to Scottish football’s top flight. (The Scotsman)
Souttar defends under-fire Sbragia
JOHN Souttar has defended Ricky Sbragia after the Scotland Under-19 coach was slammed for leaving Real Madrid starlet Jack Harper out of his latest squad.
The Dundee United defender insisted the dressing-room was behind the former Sunderland boss, while other Scotland internationals have also thrown their support behind Sbragia. (Evening Times)