ABERDEEN’S Niall McGinn is facing a late fitness test to be ready for today’s Scottish League Cup final; Aiden McGeady says James Forrest has what it takes to become a top player; Rangers board issue statement reassuring fans over Ibrox, Murray Park, plus the rest of today’s football news and gossip
Niall McGinn set to miss out on Cup Final
Aberdeen’s top scorer Niall McGinn looks set to miss out on today’s Scottish League Cup final against Inverness through injury.
McGinn, 26, is a major doubt after battling a groin injury which saw him start Aberdeen’s last game, a Scottish Cup quarter final against Dumbarton, fron the bench. The striker has scored 10 goals so far for his club, and will be expected to lead the attack if he manages to prove his fitnes prior to the game.
Manager Derek McInness would be forced into reshaping his starting line-up in McGinn’s absence.
Meanwhile, Peter Pawlett is set to start after also fighting a groin strain. (Sunday Express)
Rangers board assure fans on Ibrox, Murray Park
The Rangers board have rebuffed claims made by Dave King and fans’ groups over the security of Ibrox Stadium and Murray Park following the South African-based businessman’s meeting with the hierarchy on Friday.
Releasing a statement following a public show of support from fans on Friday, in which they held up around 30,000 blue cards in a tacit backing for King, the club said: “Mr King was helpful in outlining the concerns of supporters in relation to to communications from the club, and was reassured by plans to announce the results of the business review and trading update in the next few weeks, ahead of the season ticket renewal deadline.
“In response to Mr King’s concerns over the security of Ibrox and Murray Park, the board reiterated it has no intention of using these properties for any measure of security.” (The Sun on Sunday)
Rangers’ season defined by Scottish Cup, says Law
A League One title may have been toasted a mere five days ago but it is tomorrow’s Scottish Cup quarter-final replay against Albion Rovers that will determine how this season is remembered for Rangers.
In the unlikely event of the fourth-tier part-timers ousting opponents that operate with the second-highest wage bill in the country, their campaign will be captured in that moment. Rangers’ Nicky Law is fully alive to what is on the line at New Douglas Park.
“The tie does define our season, because if we lose it, I don’t know what the reaction would be... but I am guessing obviously it wouldn’t be good. With all due respect to Albion we should be winning and bad as we played in the first game, we had chances to do so then.” (Scotland on Sunday)
James Forrest can go to the very top, says McGeady
Aiden McGeady always believed that James Forrest would shine as a Celtic player and he says he could now be one of the Scottish players given an integral role in the country’s rehabilitation on the international stage.
“You always get a lot of younger boys training with the first team, boys who are supposed to be not quite the next best thing but who are playing well at reserve level, but the only one I ever thought had the chance was him,” said the Everton attacker, who made a £10 million move from Celtic to Spartak Moscow in August 2010, before arriving at Goodison Park a couple of months ago. “He came in and looked like a first-team player when he was just 18. He would get on the ball and beat players and play his normal game, whereas others were maybe a bit too overawed by the fact they were training with the first team.” (Scotland on Sunday)
Rangers target St Mirren’s Kenny McLean
St Mirren’s Kenny McLean is among Rangers’ top targets for next season - but fears have already been raised over losing him to an English club.
The Scotland U21 player is being targeted by a number of clubs south of the border, including Ipswich, Leeds, Blackburn Rovers and Huddersfield.
St Mirren would prefer McLean to move to an English club, which would guarantee a higher compensation fee of around £350,000. A move to Rangers, however, would mean the sum would be decided by a tribunal.
However, McLean is also a boyhood Rangers fan who failed to make the grade as a youth at Ibrox, and may be able to force through a move. (The Sun on Sunday)
Aidan Smith: Boyd, Robson & Flood among SPFL best
Flood is back in another League Cup final and this time Robson’s at his side. They’re surely contenders for one of the Player of the Year bawbees, although there should be keen competition from that bloke Boyd.
Boydy, Robbo and Will.o.am. Forgetting about Kris Commons and the Dundee United superkids for a moment, are they not the stars of the season? Read more