Rumour Mill: English sides eye Rangers defender | Lennon slams referee over ghost goal | Jack out for Celtic clash?

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Scottish football gossip: James Tavernier a wanted man down south; Neil Lennon brands disallowed goal decision ‘a disgrace’ and could Ryan Jack miss the Old Firm game?

Sunderland and Reading chase Tav

Could James Tavernier be tempted back to England? Picture: SNS Group

Could James Tavernier be tempted back to England? Picture: SNS Group

Championship sides Sunderland and Reading are both reportedly keen on Rangers defender James Tavernier, ahead of the January transfer window.

The former Wigan full back has 18 months left on his contract at Ibrox and wouldn’t set either side back too much in terms of a fee.

Reading are still eyeing promotion while Black Cats boss Chris Coleman is said to be keen on bringing in players to bolster his backline. (Daily Mail)

Lenny fumes over ghost goal

Neil Lennon branded the decision not to award his Hibs side a derby goal a “disgrace” as both he and Hearts boss Craig Levein agreed Oli Shaw’s effort had crossed the line.

Shaw’s early effort at Tynecastle came down off the bar and bounced over the line but was ruled not to be a goal by far side assistant referee Sean Carr.

Lennon said: “It was a disgrace. Daylight over the line. How he did not see that is beyond me. It’s a goal, everyone could see it.” (The Scotsman)

Jack a doubt for Old Firm clash

Rangers manager Graeme Murty is bracing himself for a fresh injury blow with Ryan Jack set to miss Saturday’s Old Firm showdown at Celtic Park.

The midfielder was carried off on a stretcher after suffering damage to a knee in a challenge from Cedric Kipre during Rangers’ 2-0 win over Motherwell at Ibrox.

Murty, whose options in that area of the pitch are already limited by a long-term injury to Graham Dorrans, does not expect Jack to be available this weekend. (The Scotsman)

Hayes out for season after breaking leg

Celtic winger Jonny Hayes is set to miss the rest of the season after having surgery on the broken leg he suffered in his side’s 2-0 victory away to Dundee on Boxing Day.

The 30-year-old was stretchered off after a collision with Josh Meekings and Brendan Rodgers initially expressed his hope that the injury would not be as serious as feared.

But X-rays showed a fractured tibia and Hayes had a pin inserted in his leg that will mean a rehab period that is unlikely to see him appear again before May. (The Scotsman)

Celtic face battle to land Hendry

Celtic face stiff competition in the race to sign Dundee defender Jack Hendry.

Representatives from Southampton ran the rule over Hendry during the 2-0 defeat to Celtic and are looking for a replacement for Virgil van Dijk.

A total of 18 clubs had a look at Hendry during the match, with Newcastle and Crystal Palace reportedly keen on the centre back. (Daily Mail)

We got out of jail with ghost goal, admits Levein

Craig Levein admitted Hearts got “out of jail” last night when Hibs were denied a clear goal during the Edinburgh derby at Tynecastle Park.

The Hearts boss said: “We did get out of jail. I hear that shot was in, but we need something like that. We haven’t had an awful lot of joy with those kind of decisions.

“I think it was a centimetre over the line. Jon said to me that he thought it was in. We’ve had a lot of things go against us in recent times so we’ll take that one.” (Evening News)

Canning unhappy with postponement

Martin Canning hit out at referee Barry Cookafter the whistler called off Hamilton’s clash with Kilmarnock after deciding the all-weather pitch as unplayable.

Cook’s decision just 80 minutes before kick-off angered Canning, who said: “For me, it’s playable. Obviously it’s been cold and there was a lot more snow than we’d expected. But the groundsman worked hard to clear the pitch and if the referee had been willing to give it another half an hour the game could have gone on.” (The Sun)

NEWS IN BRIEF

• Dundee United midfielder Fraser Fyvie is likely to be out for around a month after sustaining a knee injury in the win over Livingston

• Hull City have been linked with Kilmarnock winger Jordan Jones as the Tigers look to bolster their squad next month

• Hamilton are set to part ways with Georgios Sarris after agreeing a deal to cover the remaining five months of his contract