The Rumour Mill: Monday’s football news and gossip

Celtic fans brought banners to the match at Easter Road. Picture: SNS
Celtic fans brought banners to the match at Easter Road. Picture: SNS
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In today’s Rumour Mill: Ally McCoist seeks support from Walter Smith; Daniel Cousin’s move to Rangers dependant on SPL appeal and Ibrox redundancies; Anthony Stokes looking for long-term deal; plus all the rest of today’s football news and rumour.

For all the gloating and gallows humour hanging over Ibrox - a humorous/stinging (delete as appropriate) selection of which can be found on The Sun’s back pages - sympathy for the club’s plight remains - not least from former manager Walter Smith, who rang his successor Ally McCoist at 4am from the US to offer some timely (well, maybe not at that sort of hour) words of advice, according to today’s back pages. Recently departed striker Nikica Jelavic also extends his sympathies to Rangers, saying: “I’m sorry to hear what has happened to Rangers and I hope it gets sorted.”

Even Kilmarnock player Lewis Toshney, on loan from Celtic, had some concilliatory words for the club he helped defeat at the weekend, saying: “It’s bad for any club, not just Rangers, who are a massive club...I hope they come through it, I really do.” (The Sun)

Meanwhile, Daniel Cousin’s on-off move to Rangers continues to drag on. The Gabon striker’s switch to Ibrox was blocked by the SPL after administrators Duff & Phelps were appointed. All of today’s back pages claim that McCoist will consider a final appeal for the move to be ratified. However, should administrators decide that redundancies are necessary, then any such appeal would be abandoned, according to McCoist.

In the wake of their 5-0 demolition of Hibs, Celtic take another step on their leisurely march to the league title. One of the scorers from that game, Anthony Stokes, has told of his desire to stay at Parkhead for the long-haul. A selection of headlines from today’s back pages to communicate the fact: ‘Make me a life Bhoy’ (Express); ‘Hoopy Ever After’ (Record); ‘Stokes now the real deal’ (Mail).

Celtic boss Neil Lennon tells The Sun of his admiration for beleagured Blackburn boss Steve Kean, insisting that what the former Celtic player went through was on a par with Lennon’s troubles last year. Lennon said: “What Steve’s been through is totally different to what I’ve went through...but the way he has handled it all has been fantastic.”

Hamstring knack visits upon Pittodrie again: Aberdeen midfielder Stephen Hughes is the latest player to be felled by the accursed injury, which has already sidelined Chris Clark, Isaac Osbourne and Peter Pawlett. Craig Brown says that the former Rangers and Motherwell midfielder will be out for around a month. (Express)

Over at Tannadice, Dundee United defender Robbie Nielson is hoping for a move abroad after his short-term deal expires in the summer. The former Hearts and Leicester player spoke of his desire to experience “something a bit different”, which, if the dreary goalless display against St Mirren was anything to go by, means he’d like to play football. (Express, Mail)