Ronny Deila sacrifices style to provide success at Celtic; The date of the Celtic v Rangers clash is announced; Craig Whyte granted bail after court appearance and more in Saturday’s Rumour Mill
Ronny Deila sacrifices style to provide success at Celtic
Ronny Deila has conceded he has been forced to abandon his footballing philosophy as he pursues multiple silverware in his first season as Celtic manager. Deila was adamant at the start of his reign that he would not prioritise results ahead of performance levels while he sought to impose his own style of play at the Scottish champions.
Speaking in July before his first home competitive fixture in the job, Deila stated: “I will never say that – never”. But four months down the line, the Norwegian has been persuaded to adopt a far less idealistic stance as he adapts to the demands of his role at Celtic.
“I have to admit that I have ditched those principles a lot this season,” said Deila ahead of tomorrow’s Scottish Cup fourth round tie against Championship leaders Hearts at Tynecastle.
“Because I now understand it is a totally different environment here, compared to what I was used to before (at Stromsgodset in Norway).
“This is all about results – you have to win all the time. So you have to think short-term and also try to take small steps towards the long-term things as well.” (Scotsman)
Meanwhile, Deila has also admitted he is addicted to Celtic. He said: “‘You are addicted to this,” Deila stated. “You hate it and you love it.
“I wonder about the day I wake up and I don’t have it.
“Sometimes you think of lying on a beach in Spain and not having it but I would miss this.
“You are in the fire and I love to be there. I love to be down and I love to be up and you try to be in between.
“That’s what I’ve been doing for 20 years.
“I don’t enjoy being two goals down after 13 minutes. I assure you I was hurting inside but it’s part of the job.”
He adds that the thought of winning the treble is driving him on. He said: “Every time I wake up in the morning, I see that in front of me,”
“That’s really the goal, to win everything, and I think that’s what the players are doing, as well.
“But we have to think how we are going to achieve it.” (Daily Mail)
Former Rangers owner Craig Whyte released on bail
Former Rangers owner Craig Whyte was released on bail yesterday after appearing in court to face fraud charges.
Whyte, 43, appeared at Glasgow Sheriff Court in connection with an investigation into the purchase of Rangers Football Club in 2011.
He left the court amid chaotic scenes, facing a gauntlet of photographers and a crowd of people who screamed abuse at him.
Whyte exited the main door accompanied by four police officers, who pushed a way clear for him to reach a saloon car, which took him from the scene.
He appeared in the dock just 24 hours after arriving back in the UK having been detained in Mexico, which he had been trying to enter on a flight from Japan. (Scotsman)
Rangers reveal their accounts for the last year
Rangers released details of their finances, when they released their accounts for the last year on Thursday night:
• Former chief executive Graham Wallace earned £378,000 in less than eight months and also secured a £100,000 pay off.
• Rangers made an operating loss of £8.3m last season, an improvement of £6m on the previous campaign.
• Staff costs fell from £17.9m to £14.7m as numbers dropped from 196 to 175.
• The team’s wage bill was 26 per cent of turnover, down from 43 per cent the previous season. (Record)
The date of the Celtic v Rangers clash is announced
Celtic and Rangers will go head to head in the League Cup semi final at Hampden on Sunday, February 1 with a 1.30pm kick off - and the match will be broadcast live on BBC Scotland.
SPFL chiefs confirmed the date and times for the first Old Firm clash in nearly three years today.
Holders Aberdeen will take on north east rivals Dundee United a day earlier, again at Hampden, with a 3pm kick off.
The Glasgow giants were drawn against each other earlier this month and are set to face off for the first time since the financial collapse of Rangers in 2012.
SPFL Chief Executive Neil Doncaster said: “We are pleased to be able to announce the information for this season’s Scottish League Cup semi finals, following agreement with all four clubs and other parties involved, including our valued broadcast rights holder for the competition, BBC Scotland.
“We are all looking forward to two fantastic semi finals at Hampden Park early next year and hope supporters of all four clubs enjoy lots of entertaining football and two memorable occasions overall.”
Ticket prices across both games have also been set, with 34,000 tickets for each semi-final – around 68,000 in total – available at £25 for adults and £10 for juveniles (under-16s). (Various)
John McGinn will return for St Mirren today
John McGinn reckons it’s time St Mirren’s struggling stars started doing their talking on the pitch after taking part in a series of clear-the-air chats off it.
The Buddies kid is set to return in today’s William Hill Scottish Cup tie with Inverness Caley Thistle after spending much of November on the sidelines with a knee injury.
The 20-year-old midfield ace has been forced to watch his team-mates toil from the stand after joining a lengthy casualty list.
McGinn admits the Paisley side’s current form has made for unpleasant viewing but he believes a sense of unity and a few home truths can help haul them out of the mire.
He said: “We are a group of players who should be challenging higher up the table. It’s not nice to be down there and we are determined to get out of it.
“There have been some honest words said. We are all in it together - we are all to blame and we have all done things wrong.
“The manager will admit he’s done some things wrong but he is behind us and we are all behind him.” (Times)
Dundee Supporters Association complain to Celtic board
The head of Dundee’s main fans group is writing to Celtic and the SPFL after some travelling supporters last week were left with a view of just half the pitch.
That’s despite the crowd of 43,000 for the Dark Blues 2-1 loss to the Hoops being the best part of 20,000 short of capacity at Parkhead.
Several hundred Dundee fans attended but many only had tickets with a restricted view when an adjacent section of seating remained closed and draped with Celtic supporters’ flags.
It’s not a new problem but a flood of complaints from members has prompted Dundee Supporters Association chairman Kenny Ross to raise the matter.
“I have been inundated by emails and phone calls from DSA secretaries telling me about a disappointing experience last weekend and I am going to ask Celtic to comment,” he told the Telegraph. (Evening Telegraph)
Roy Keane quits Aston Villa
Paul Lambert was left to fight Aston Villa’s crisis on his own yesterday as Roy Keane quit as his no.2. Lambert was stunned when Keane told him he was leaving with immediate effect - just four months after becoming his assistant. Keane said: “ Ultimately, my roles with Villa and Ireland, and combining my commitment to these, have become too much. It isn’t fair to Villa or Ireland, so I’ve made this decision.” (Express)
Man United star Herrera to face match fixing probe
Ander Herrera is part of a probe into match-fixing and illegal payments in Spain. According to Spanish reports, prosecutors will next week file court papers naming Manchester United’s £28m midfield signing from Athletico Bilbao as part of their investigation. If found guilty he could face a ban or even jail time. (Mirror)
News in brief:
• Rangers winger Fraser Aird has insisted Rangers will silence their critics and that the team are fully backing manager Ally McCoist. (Scotsman)
• On loan Hibs keeper Mark Oxley wants to remain at Easter Road beyond January. (Mail)
• David Moyes delighted with 3-0 win in second game in charge at Sociedad. (Mail)