Rumour Mill: Hearts ‘irrelevant’, says Lennon | Levein haunted by ‘natural order’ jibe | Rodgers shoots down talk of Rangers revival

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Neil Lennon has branded Hearts “irrelevant” to Hibs ambitions, Brendan Rodgers will today decide whether to throw Dedryck Boyata straight into the heat of an Old Firm clash, the Celtic boss has shot down talk of a Rangers revival and Craig Levein has been left haunted by his “natural order” taunt aimed at Hibs.

Hearts are irrelevant, says Lennon

Neil Lennon has branded Hearts “irrelevant” after Hibs stormed to a 2-0 win over their derby rivals at Easter Road last night. The Hibs manager described the 12-point gap between the two Edinburgh rivals as “huge” and said his club was looking upwards, not backwards. Scott Allan and Jamie Maclaren scored as Hibs now set their sights on overhauling Rangers and Aberdeen on the table. “They are irrelevant to us now,” Lennon said of Hearts. “We are looking up the table rather than what’s behind us.” (The Scotsman)

Rodgers to decide today on Boyata for Old Firm

Celtic boss Brendan Rodgers is tipped to make a final call today on whether to throw either Dedryck Boyata or Stuart Armstrong back into the heat of Old Firm action. Boyata has been sidelined since tweaking his groin in the loss to Kilmarnock, but is available again for selection. Rodgers need a replacement for the suspended Mickael Lustig and may need to turn to Belgian defender Boyata. (The Herald)

Craig Levein haunted by ‘natural order’ taunt

Neil Lennon celebrates Hibs' 2-0 victory at Easter Road last night

Neil Lennon celebrates Hibs' 2-0 victory at Easter Road last night

Craig Levein was targeted by goading from Hibs fans as his “natural order” jibe after Hearts’ previous derby win came back to haunt him last night, writes Moira Gordon. The official kick-off of the Easter Road clash was delayed by four minutes due to flares being thrown on the pitch, but Levein was the real target. Hibs fans spent the final ten minutes chanting about the ease of the victory – and letting Levein know all about it. (The Scotsman)

Scott has the ‘desire’ to star for Scotland

Alex McLeish has declared Manchester United midfielder Scott McTominay has the passion to play for Scotland. McLeish revealed the 21-year-old would make his Scottish debut next week. He claims Scotland have “nailed it” by pinching the youngster from England and plans to give him caps against Costa Rica and Hungary. (Daily Record)

Celtic boss shoots down talk of Rangers revival

The strength of Rangers revival under the stewardship of Graeme Murty has been questioned by Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers. In a barb set to ignite tensions ahead of tomorrow’s Old Firm encounter, Rodgers said Rangers’ 2-1 defeat to Neil Lennon’s Hibernian in Govan last month was a truer reflection of the rival club’s current level. Rangers have won nine of their past ten matches. (The Scotsman)

McGinn insists order has been restored

John McGinn has declared Hearts’ derby dominance as ancient history, warning their bitter rivals Hibs will be Edinburgh’s top dogs for years to come. The midfielder admitted to being fired up by revenge ahead of last night’s 2-0 triumph at Easter Road, having been fuelled by opposition manager Craig Levein’s “natural order” jibe. McGinn proved his point with a man-of-the-match display against Hearts. “We were fired up by what was said,” McGinn admitted. (Daily Record)

Young Hearts star in doubt

Harry Cochrane is in doubt for Scotland’s crunch under-17 Euro qualifying matches later this month. The Tynecastle teen limped off in last night’s Edinburgh derby at Easter Road and could be forced to pull out of Brian McLaughlin’s squad. (Daily Record)