Rumour Mill: Dave King’s vision | Celtic signings

Dave King is set to outline his plans for Rangers. Picture: SNS
Dave King is set to outline his plans for Rangers. Picture: SNS
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Dave King to outline vision for Rangers; Stuart Armstrong and Gary Mackay-Steven reject claims they forced move; Dundee United Chairman Stephen Thompson gutted to sell players and more in Wednesday’s Rumour Mill

Dave King to outline Ibrox vision

DAVE KING will outline his vision for the future tomorrow as the Battle for the Blue Room gathers pace.

King has called a press conference in Glasgow city centre where he is set to confront the challenges facing the club, now under the grip of Sports Direct tycoon Mike Ashley.

Rangers have until Friday to answer King’s call for an EGM, which is calling for the current board to be overthrown and replaced by himself, Paul Murray and John Gilligan.

However, it remains to be seen how Rangers can begin to recover economically, even if they win control of the board, with so many of the club’s commercial and retail contracts now under the control of Ashley. (Record)

Rangers eye sixth signing

The Daily Record are reporting that the Ibrox club are trying to sign a sixth signing in 24 hours, an out-of-contract player who is not at St James’ Park or connected to Mike Ashley. (Daily Record)

Jackie Mcnamara: We haven’t thrown in the towel

JACKIE McNAMARA stood facing into a biting wind at St Andrews yesterday and confronted the cold and harsh reality of Scottish football finance.

McNamara said: “Celtic have got a good deal. They’ve signed two fantastic young Scottish players. As disappointed as we are to lose them, we also had to be sensible. In the past, we lost Johnny Russell for peanuts – £750,000 to Derby County, which wasn’t enough for a player like him. Before that, it was Craig Conway to Cardiff.

“When a player goes into the last year of his contract the club loses power, so it’s easy to say: ‘wait until the summer’.

“We’d previously convinced Stuart and Nadir Ciftci to sign extensions to their contracts and had we not done that, we’d have lost them this summer as well. In fact, we expected to lose Stuart and Gary before the start of the season and when they came back for pre-season they saw it as a chance missed. (Record)

Stuart Armstrong and Gary Mackay-Steven reject claims they forced move

NEW Celtic signings Stuart Armstrong and Gary Mackay-Steven have rejected claims from Dundee United that they forced the Tannadice club’s hand to bring about their moves to Glasgow in the closing hours of transfer deadline day. Fan outcry over their departures, which followed the club’s insistence they had no need to sell after wiping bank debt and raking in £4m from transfers last year, led United to release a statement in which they said they had to part with Armstrong and Mackay-Steven because the duo “made it clear” they wanted to leave. As he was paraded at Celtic Park yesterday following a deal believed to be worth around £1.8m with add-ons, Armstrong made it clear he had voiced no such demand. “I don’t think I actively expressed that to them [that I wanted to leave],” said the 22-year-old, who had 18 months of his contract to run.” (Scotsman.com)

Armstrong and Mackay-Steven registered for Europa League

Celtic moved swiftly to beat another midnight deadline last night when Gary Mackay-Steven and Stuart Armstrong were registered with Uefa for their Europa League squad list.

A Hoops spokesman confirmed that the registration of both players - as well as on-loan hitman John Guidetti, who had been signed too late at the start of the season to make the original list - had gone through in time.

It means all three players are eligible to feature against Roberto Mancini’s struggling Inter Milan in the last-32 double-header later this month. (Evening Times)

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Dundee United Chairman Stephen Thompson gutted to sell players

Dundee United Chairman Stephen Thompson has reflected on a dramatic transfer deadline day and knows he did what was best for his club. Like every Arab, the life-long fan was gutted to see star men Stuart Armstrong and Gary Mackay-Steven leave for Celtic.

The near-£2 million his club netted for them softened the blow — but only a little.

“I’m a fan, I’m gutted,” he told the Tele.

“For a long time last night [transfer deadline day] I hummed and hawed and would not sell — but in the end I am chairman and I have to act in the best interests of this club.

“I have always put its long-term interests first and I always will.

“In the end, that is why I agreed to sell these players and having now had time to reflect, because I haven’t been to bed yet, I know I have done that.” (Evening Telegraph)

Inter opt to leave out Podolski for Celtic games

Roberto Mancini has opted to leave Lukas Podolski out of Inter’s Europa League squad and has instead added Xherdan Shaqiri to his roster for the competition.

The Nerazzurri were allowed to add one of the new signings but the Germany international was overlooked, while the returning Davide Santon, who came through the club’s youth ranks, was also picked as an ‘A’ selection.

Pablo Osvaldo, who was involved in a recent on-field spat with team-mate Mauro Icardi, and missed two days of training without consent, is also missing from the list.

Podolski, 29, joined Inter on a six-month loan deal from Arsenal in January and has made six appearances for the club so far, but is yet to score a goal.

Inter’s Europa League squad: Handanovic, Jonathan, Juan Jesus, Andreolli, Palacio, Icardi, Kovacic, Guarin, Campagnaro, Vidic, Kuzmanovic, Medel, Obi, Santon, Dodo, Ranocchia, Sciacca, Puscas, Carrizo, D’Ambrosio, Berni, Donkor, Nagatomo, Hernanes, Shaqiri, Baldini, Dimarco, Koffi Yao, Costa, Palazzi, Bonazzoli. (Goal.com)

News in brief:

• Tim Sherwood favourite to replace Harry Redknapp at Queen’s Park Rangers. (Mirror)

Carlton Cole ‘screamed his frustration’ at Sam allardyce when told his West Brom move was off. (Mirror)