Ally McCoist refuses to comment on his future at Rangers; Ronny Deila tells Kris Commons he has a future at Celtic; Les Hutchison confirmed as new owner of Motherwell and more in Saturday’s Rumour Mill
Mystery surrounds Ally McCoist’s future
Mystery continued to surround Ally McCoist’s future last night but something was very clear: Hearts today have the opportunity to extend their Championship lead to 12 points over the ailing Ibrox side, who limply fell to a 2-0 defeat against Queen of the South last night amid on-going speculation about the manager’s position.
Afterwards McCoist refused to confirm whether or not he had tendered his resignation, as had been reported earlier in the day.
His stated wish to still be at Rangers for the “foreseeable future” suggested he had not done what had been reported and intimated to the board his desire to leave the club.
“I told them [the Rangers players] I was the Rangers manager and I will continue to be the Rangers manager.”
Asked whether he expected to be at Ibrox next season, he replied: “Absolutely. I am the Rangers manager and that will be the case hopefully for the foreseeable future.” (Scotsman)
Rangers youth academy chief set to leave
Rangers youth academy chief Jimmy Sinclair is set to be the next victim of the cull of staff at Ibrox. It’s understood that Sinclair’s impending departure may have had an influence on McCoist’s decision to tender his resignation. (Record)
Ronny Deila tells Kris Commons he has a future at Celtic
Ronny Deila insists Celtic can still agree terms to keep Kris Commons as he hit back at the star’s claim he is only being offered a one-year deal.
The manager insists the offer tabled by chief executive Peter Lawwell is structured to keep Commons at the club beyond next season – provided he is still playing a major part in the team.
Commons spoke out on Thursday, branding the contract offer unacceptable and explaining the issue was over the length of the deal rather than money.
That could pave the way for the 31-year-old to leave in next month’s transfer window, with former Celtic boss Neil Lennon believed to be keen for Commons to follow him to Bolton. But yesterday Deila clarified Celtic’s position and insisted he believes a deal can still be struck.
He said: “Peter is talking with his agent about a structure in his deal and that is where we stand right now.
“We haven’t offered one year, we are talking about a structured deal based on appearances. That’s where the difference is.
“We are talking about a different situation when you have older players. I had the same thing at Stromsgodset.
“If older players get very long contracts, you never know with them. If they get a bad injury, how long can they keep up? Are they keeping their legs? And when is their passion gone? So if you give them a long contract it is a risk for the club.” (Various)
Financial expert warns Scottish football will soon be on a par with the Irish league
The financial expert who masterminded Fergus McCann’s takeover of Celtic 20 years ago has warned Scottish football has still to hit rock bottom – and when it does it will be on a par with the Irish League.
David Low, now co-owner of the Glasgow Rocks basketball club, is convinced authorities must change the game from top to bottom if it is to have any chance of pulling out of the tailspin he believes will see it crash and burn as other sports cash in by attracting disillusioned football supporters. “Celtic and the rest of the Scottish game is going to settle – but at an ever-decreasing lower level.
“That’s going to make the step up into European competition more and more difficult,
“I don’t think we’ve found our base level yet, I believe we have lower to sink before we bottom out.
“We are heading for Irish territory – getting to the same level of the Irish League. I know that sounds pessimistic but that’s where we are headed, taking a five-year view.” (Record)
Kris Commons insists he can play for Celtic until he’s 37
The contract talks have stalled but Kris Commons insists he’s not even contemplating the prospect of not being at Celtic for the foreseeable future.
Quite the opposite in fact. The Hoops attacker can see himself still producing the goods at Parkhead for years to come.
There’s a new one-year deal on the table. Commons is holding out for at least two.
But he is convinced he can still star right up until his late 30s and only has to look at his old boss Neil Lennon for inspiration.
Commons said: “I’m 31 at the minute and I’d be very surprised if I was to get a big deal at 34 or 35.
“But I think players, particularly at Celtic, have proved they can still play at an older age if they keep healthy and on top of their game.
“They can play on until they are 36 or 37 and my old manager proved that.” (Record)
Ian Baraclough is the new Motherwell manager
The Daily Express are reporting that Ian Baraclough is the new Motherwell manager. The former Scunthorpe boss, who was at Fir Park last night, has won the fight to succeed Stuart McCall. (Express)
Les Hutchison confirmed as new owner of Motherwell
Les Hutchison was last night confirmed as the new owner of Motherwell. The reclusive billionaire vowed to have the club owned by the fans by 2019. He will now run the club in conjunction with the Well Society. In a statement issued by the club Hutchison said: “I look forward to working with the Society and the club to help achieve the objective of fan ownership and be financially sustainable within five years.” (Record)
Celtic to offer unemployed supporters a free ticket
Not wanting to miss out on the season of goodwill, Celtic are offering unemployed supporters a free ticket for the game against Ross County on the 27th December.
All supporters have to do is turn up at the ticket office with their relevant documents, proving they are registered as unemployed and they are eligible for a ticket for the home game.
Celtic are not the first club to offer free tickets to the unemployed, with Steven Naismith and Everton donating a load of tickets to the local job centre earlier in the year. (Talkingbaws.com)
Beram Kayal claims he’s being snubbed by Israel
Beram Kayal claims he’s being snubbed by Israel for political reasons after he posted a picture of a Palestinian flag on his Twitter account. He hasn’t been selected by international manager Eli Guttman since March last year. “He doesn’t pick me because of that picture of the flag on Twitter,” said the star. (Record)
News in brief:
• Roberto Martinez is eyeing the prospect of a Battle of Britain with relish. He said: “Everton against Celtic? I think it would be big.” (Record)
• Dejan Lovren fears for his future at Liverpool, just six months into his £20 million move to the Anfield club. (Mirror)