Rumour Mill: Gerrard eyes West Ham hero | Lawwell: Celtic '˜stronger than ever' | McLeish urges Fifa to revise rules

Incoming Ibrox boss Steven Gerrard '˜targets' West Ham defender, Celtic chief executive Peter Lawwell hails Celtic's '˜strongest-ever' financial state and Alex McLeish calls on Fifa to end farce over call-offs.

Steven Gerrard eyes move for West Ham hero James Collins

Ranger boss Steven Gerrard is reportedly eyeing a move for ex-West Ham defender James Collins. The 34-year-old Welshman is out of contract after being freed by the Premier League side. The incoming Ibrox manager is looking to add experience and strength to his backline ahead of the new season. (The Scottish Sun)

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David Bates pays tribute to Rangers as he officially leaves for Hamburg

West Ham defender James Collins is reportedly a target for Rangers. Picture: Getty

David Bates has paid a touching tribute to Rangers fans, players and staff after moving to Hamburg. The former Raith Rovers defender has joined the Bundesliga 2 outfit but made sure he issued a classy message after his departure. He added in his message: “Although we didn’t finish the season the way we should have, I would like to wish the club all the success in the future.” (The Daily Record)

Celtic chief executive Peter Lawwell hails club’s ‘strongest-ever’ financial state

Peter Lawwell has claimed Celtic are in their ‘strongest-ever’ state to cope if they miss out on Champions League income. Asked about the impact of not getting through, Lawwell told the Celtic Underground podcast: “I don’t think we’ve ever been stronger.” (MailSport)

Revealed: Full details of planned Celtic Park improvements

Celtic chief Peter Lawwell. Picture: John Devlin

Celtic chief Peter Lawwell has updated supporters on the planned renovations to the club’s stadium. Lawwell confirmed that the Hoops would be spending around £5 million on a variety of improvements, including an upgrade of the Parkhead pitch. As well as the installation of a new hybrid pitch, the club are putting in new floodlights, plus new LED lighting and sound in a major revamp of the entertainment system. (The Scotsman)

Hearts handed reunuion with John Robertson in Betfred Cup

Hearts will be up against Tynecastle legend John Robertson in next season’s Betfred Cup after the draw for the group stage paired them with Inverness Caledonian Thistle. Robertson, Hearts’ record league goalscorer, is in his second spell in charge of the Highland club and will bring his team to Gorgie for the group fixture. (The Scotsman)

Hibs star suspended for opening match of new season

Hibs will be without Steven Whittaker for the opening Premiership match of next season thanks to a booking picked up in the fifth minute of added-on time in their final match of last term against Rangers. Whitaker was shown the yellow card by referee Andrew Dallas for a foul on Rangers Jamie Murphy in the dying seconds of the epic 5-5 draw at Easter Road. (Edinburgh Evening News)

Partick Thistle announce 14 players to leave Firhill

Partick Thistle have announced 14 players will leave Firhill after being relegated to the Championship. The Jags were dumped from the top flight by Livingston in the playoffs and the rebuilding job has started in Maryhill. (The Daily Record)

Alex McLeish calls on Fifa to end farce over call-offs

Alex McLeish has called on FIFA to end the farce that has decimated his Scotland squad with call offs. The national team boss has suffered six withdrawals for the tour to Peru and Mexico from a squad that was already reeling at being patched by big name stars. McLeish wants respectful dialogue with our major clubs, but the current rules don’t allow him to force the issue with the teams and players he really needs. (The Daily Record)