Celtic ‘could bring Odegaard in on loan’ as Jason Denayer urged to stay at Celtic and not return to Manchester City’s bench; McNamara claims Deila is ‘feeling the pressure’ and Stuart McCall says three loan Rangers may never play for Ibrox club
Odegaard loan deal an option for Celtic
RONNY Deila has not ruled out a loan move for Norwegian starlet Martin Odegaard, after reports the 16-year-old could join Southampton on loan next season.
Deila has been credited with nurturing the player by Odegaard himself and the youngster regards his former boss as hugely influential.
And Celtic could try to take Odegaard on loan if Real Madrid are open to letting him gain experience abroad.
Deila added: “I haven’t heard his situation had changed, but if it’s true he’s going to be loaned out, then we will check and see what is possible.
“It’s more interesting to have players we own or have a buy-in option. They have to be very, very good like Jason Denayer, if we are to take them on loan without that buy-in agreement.” (Daily Record)
Deila urges Denayer to stay at Celtic
RONNY Deila has urged on-loan Manchester City stopper Jason Denayer to extend his stay at Celtic and not return to warming the bench at Manchester City.
The Belgian defender has indicated he plans to return to City in the summer when his loan deal is up but Deila has not given up hope of bringing Denayer back to Glasgow.
“He is doing well and is 20 years old,” the Norwegian said. “He has had a good year here and I still think he should stay here for at least half a year. Hopefully we go through the Champions League qualification and he can be part of that.
“To take him away and have him sitting on the bench at Manchester City would not be good for his career. I talk with Jason a lot, but it’s not just about us and him, it’s about what City think also.” (The Scotsman)
Deila ‘feeling the pressure’ claims McNamara
THE simmering tension between Dundee United and Celtic threatened to boil over again last night as United manager Jackie McNamara accused Ronny Deila of inflaming the situation.
McNamara spoke out ahead of today’s Scottish Premiership clash - the fourth time the rivals have met in the past fortnight.
And the former Celtic defender said: “Everything has just kind of boiled up over the last two weeks, but I understand the pressure Ronny Deila is under.”
“He’s under pressure to succeed and win a domestic treble because of the money they’ve spent and the resources they have. Celtic are under enormous pressure because of the Champions League and I understand that.
“His [Deila’s] words are not accurate or helpful, speaking about players like Aidan and now Ryan. For me there hasn’t been any real dangerous tackles. We need to get a bit of perspective here. But that’s down to pressure.
“We’re all under pressure but using words like ‘career-threatening’ and singling out players, I don’t think the Celtic manager should be doing that.” (The Scotsman)
McCall blasts loan Rangers
STUART McCall has lifted the lid on the situation with Rangers and the five Newcastle loan players, revealing that the Ibrox club are paying wages for three players who may never pull on the jersey.
Haris Vuckic has been the only loan star who has played regularly, with defender Remie Streete sustaining an injury in his first 45 minutes of action while Gael Bigirimana, Shane Ferguson and Kevin Mbabu have yet to appear and may never.
Former chief executive Derek Llambias struck a deal with Toon bosses to bring the quintet to Ibrox on the final day of the January transfer window, but McCall has revealed Ferguson and Bigirimana may never play for Rangers.
He said: “Obviously Vuckic has been in the side and has done well. Streete came and played the first game and pulled his hamstring. Kevin Mbabu is training with us and has played two Under-20 games but his match fitness is not up to what we would like.
“[Bigirimana] has a medical condition that our consultant is dealing with. But he won’t play for us this season. And Shane Ferguson has had a long-standing serious knee injury. So he looks a serious doubt to be involved.”
McCall added that Rangers were paying ‘a portion’ of the five players’ wages. (Daily Record)
Hibs strikers face fitness race to face Gers
DOMINIQUE Malonga and Jason Cummings could yet play a part in Hibernian’s clash with Rangers tomorrow despite both nursing niggling injuries.
Cummings was subbed at half time against Cowdenbeath last week while Malonga missed the win over Livingston and the Blue Brazil clash.
But Alan Stubbs is hopeful both should make an appearance against Rangers at Easter Road. (Evening News)
Neilson: Winning league would be best achievement
HEARTS boss Robbie Neilson has admitted winning the Championship title would rank as his best achievement in football.
The former Hearts defender has taken the club to the brink of promotion, and they could wrap up the title if they beat Falkirk and Hibs fail to beat Rangers. (Evening News)
Edinburgh City take step closer to SPFL
EDINBURGH City didn’t kick a ball last night but wrapped up the Lowland League title after East Kilbride defeated Whitehill Welfare.
City now face a play-off with the winners of the Highland League for the chance to take on the bottom side in Scottish League 2, with the winners securing League status for next season. (Evening News)