The Rumour Mill: Friday’s football news and gossip

In today’s Rumour Mill: Neil Lennon named in connection with possible Norwich vacancy; Rangers face another SFA appeal; James McPake keen to stay at Hibs; plus the rest of the day’s football news and gossip.

Lennon in the frame for Norwich

Norwich City are reported to be lining up Celtic boss Neil Lennon as a replacement for Paul Lambert. It is understood that Canaries chief executive David McNally, a former Celtic marketing chief, is an admirer of the title-winning Parkhead manager. Other names being mentioned for the job include Cardiff City boss Malky MacKay and Birmingham’s Chris Hughton. (Sun)

• Paul Lambert offered his resignation yesterday, only for the club to reveal in a statement that they have not accepted it. Norwich confirmed Lambert, who has been strongly linked with the vacant manager’s post at Aston Villa, wanted to leave. The club said: “We have fought hard to keep Paul at Norwich and have not accepted his resignation whilst discussions with another club are taking place.” (Various)

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• Celtic are monitoring Swansea City striker Stephen Dobbie, who is waiting to see what the future holds for him at the Welsh club after the departure of manager Brendan Rodgers. (Express)

• Angers striker Gaetan Charbonnier says he is flattered to be linked with a move to Celtic this summer. Parkhead scouts have been watching the Frenchman, who has been likened to international star Oliver Giroud. (Herald)

• The SPL has approved Celtic’s plans to play Real Madrid on the second Saturday of the season. Celtic this week announced they would take on the Spanish champions in Philadelphia on 11 August, seven days after the SPL kick-off. (Scotsman)

• Celtic have told Darren O’Dea he can leave for nothing and will not trigger a one-year option on the unsettled defender’s contract. (Sun)

• Celtic are hoping to arrange a pre-season fixture in Holland against Ajax. (Record)

Rangers takeover

• The SFA last night accepted the Court of Session’s ruling that the transfer embargo imposed on Rangers was unlawful and have referred the case back to their independent Appellate Tribunal to decide on an alternative punishment for the crisis-torn Ibrox club. (Various)

• SFA chief executive Stewart Regan released a statement in which he condemned Rangers for taking the matter outwith football’s own disciplinary systems in direct contravention of Fifa and Uefa regulations. (Various)

• Sion owner Christian Constantin has told Rangers to take on Fifa, after his own club were booted out of Europe and replaced by Celtic last season. He said: “Rangers should fight hard. If they think their fight is the right one they should go to the end.” (Sun)

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• Rangers fans are demanding answers on the club’s finances from Charles Green’s consortium before they buy season tickets. (Express)

• St Johnstone and Kilmarnock are monitoring David Healy, who does not expect to return to Rangers. (Express)

McPake could take £200k pay cut to stay at Hibs

James McPake is reportedly willing to give up £200,000 to ensure he gets a permanent move to Hibs, after becoming a fans’ favourite while on loan last season from Coventry City. The defender has a year left of his lucrative deal with Coventry, but is keen to sign a deal with Pat Fenlon’s side. Hearts are also keen on the player, but only if Marius Zaliukas is sold. (Sun)

• Hibs are preparing a deal for Slovakian international defender Lubo Michalik. The former Leeds player is considering a new deal with Carlisle and Pat Fenlon has been told to increase his wage offer if he wants to secure his signing. (Mail)

• Jorge Claros is determined to see out his 12-month loan from Honduran side Motagua depsite failing to impress since his January arrival. (Record)

Caley reassure fans as players leave

Inverness chairman Kenny Cameron has assured fans they have had positive feedback from signing targets after several players chose to leave the club. Striker Gregory Tade this week turned down a one-year deal after being offered a two-year contract at St Johnstone, Greg Tansey signed for Stevenage, goalkeeper Jonny Tuffey has left in search of first-team football and Jonny Hayes also looks set to move on with Aberdeen claiming he has agreed to join them. Manager Terry Butcher set his players a deadline of today to accept new contracts, but so far only goalkeeper Ryan Esson is confirmed as staying on. (Scotsman)


• St Johnstone have beaten off competition from Aberdeen, Kilmarnock and several English clubs to sign former St Mirren striker Nigel Hasselbaink on a two-year deal. (Sun)

• Kilmarnock have offered a deal to former St Mirren defender Jeroen Tesselaar, but nothing has been confirmed yet. (Sun)

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• Falkirk have signed Bury winger Andy Haworth on a two-year deal. (Record)

• Dunfermline boss Jim Jefferies concedes he faces a fight to keep out-of-contract midfielder Mark Kerr, who is weighing up his options. (Mail)

• Dundee are set to sign out-of-favour St Johnstone striker Carl Finnegan, who was on loan at Dens Park last season. (Mail)