Rumour Mill: Rangers takeover | January signings

Ibrox Stadium. Picture: John Devlin
Ibrox Stadium. Picture: John Devlin
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ROBERT Sarver ponders next move in bid to take over Rangers; Hibernian sign Ivory Coast striker; James McFadden, Jason Cummings charged over offensive gestures, plus the rest of today’s football news and gossip

Robert Sarver weighs options as Rangers reject bid

Robert Sarver will bide his time before deciding how to respond to Rangers’ rejection of his proposed £18 million takeover. The Ibrox club said yesterday that the American’s valuation was too low, but invited him to have talks about investing in the cash-strapped business.

In response, Sarver noted that the deadline for making a formal offer is 2 February, and said he had yet to decide whether to bid or what form his offer would take. (Scotsman)

Rangers lining up Valencia assistant for top job

Rangers are eyeing up Ian Cathro to take over from caretaker manager Ian McDowall after the season’s end. Cathro’s name has been discussed behind the scenes at Ibrox as they seek a long-term replacement for Ally McCoist, who was placed on gardening leave in December. Cathro, 28, is viewed as one of Europe’s brightest coaching talents, and was recently described as a “genius” by Valencia boss Nuno Espirito Santo. Cathro is no stranger to Scotland - he was junior academy chief at Dundee United before moving to the Mestalla. (Scottish Sun)

Kris Commons misses Celtic training trip over bereavement

Kris Commons has been allowed to miss out on a week-long training trip in the Canary Islands after the death of an uncle.

Commons was reportedly told of his uncle’s passing immediately after his man-of-the-match performance against Kilmarnock, which Celtic won 2-0. He travelled to England shortly after to be with his family.

Celtic will play friendlies against PSV Eindhoven and Sparta Prague during the week. (Daily Mail)

Hibs sign Franck Dja Djédjé to beef up attack

Hibernian have boosted their promotion hopes with the signing of former Ivory Coast Under-23 striker Franck Dja Djédjé, who was encouraged to join the Easter Road club by former defender Sol Bamba.

The 28-year-old has moved to the club from Belarus, where he played most recently for Dinamo Minsk. He has played in the French leagues for several clubs, including Grenoble, Strasbourg and Nice. Dja Djédjé has also played for short spells in Ukraine and Norwegian football. (Scotsman)

Derek Llambias summoned to Hampden over finances

Rangers chief executive Derek Llambias met SPFL chief Neil Doncaster yesterday as the league chief sought answers over fears that Rangers may enter administration for the second time.

A one-to-one meeting between the two took place on Tuesday as Doncaster demanded assurances that Rangers would not fall into financial meltdown - even though the board admitted that a £500,000 loan would be needed to provide “working capital” in the coming days.

Chairman David Somers and Llambias are understood to be in discussions with wealthy supporters such as George Letham and Douglas Park to stave off insolvency, in exchange for a voice on the board. (Daily Record)

Stefan Scepovic: Celtic need top form to win title

Stefan Scepovic believes Celtic will have to remain in top gear for the rest of the season if they are to retain their Scottish Premiership title.

The 24-year-old Serbian striker was given a rare start against Kilmarnock at Rugby Park on Monday night and scored the clinching goal in the convincing 2-0 win that took the visitors to within one point of leaders Aberdeen with a game in hand.

He said: ““Everyone expects us to be 15 points clear in the league because we are Celtic.

“But a lot of players and the manager came to the club in the summer so we need a little time to get to know each other and every game we are getting better.” (Scotsman)

Hibs’ Jason Cummings charged for derby gesture

Hibernian striker Jason Cummings has been offered a one match suspension by the SFA compliance officer for an “offensive gesture” made during Saturday’s Edinburgh derby.

The incident in question is understood to have occurred immediately after the striker opened the scoring and was celebrating in front of the Hearts fans.

In related news, James McFadden has been charged for making an offensive gesture to away fans during St Johnstone’s home loss to Hamilton Accies on Sunday. (Scotsman)

IN BRIEF

• Scottish referees will use vanishing spray later this year after the SFA approved the use of the substance for games at senior level. Top-flight referees will test the devices at La Manga next week at an annual training camp for whistlers. (Scottish Sun)

• Inverness will allow fans to pay what they like for their Scottish Premiership tie with St Johnstone. The move is aimed at boosting their attendances, as happened when Albion Rovers invited their fans to do the same.

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Stuart Bathgate: No appetite to give Sarver control of Rangers