The Rumour Mill: Tuesday's football news and gossip

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In today's Rumour Mill: New Rangers owner vows to cough up cash for key players; Jefferies stays put despite Romanov's interference; Two more names throw their hat into ring for Kilmarnock job; plus the rest of the day's football news and gossip.

• Priority players: (clockwise from top left) McGregor, Davis, Whittaker and Bougherra

Whyte's pledge to keep Rangers stars

Craig Whyte has vowed to provide the necessary funds for Rangers to hold on to their best players this summer. With rumours circulating over the future of Madjid Bougherra, Steven Davis, Steven Whittaker and Allan McGregor, the new owner said: "We will look carefully to see if there are better contracts available for players to remain here because I want to keep the best players here and we have the budget to do that." (The Sun)

• Craig Whyte has expressed his confidence that Rangers will avoid any financial penalty from Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs' ongoing investigation into offshore payments made to players during his predecessor Sir David Murray's tenure of the Ibrox club. (The Scotsman)

• The prospect of Ipswich Town defender Gareth McAuley joining Rangers grew last night after he rejected a new deal at Portman Road. The Northern Ireland internationalist has been a long-term target for the Ibrox club. (The Herald)

• Blackpool midfielder David Vaughan could be another target for Ally McCoist, reports the Daily Mail, which also claims that McAuley looks set to join West Brom.

• Rangers face a battle with Birmingham City boss Alex McLeish to sign highly-rated Dundee United striker David Goodwillie. (The Sun)

Jefferies to stay despite Romanov interference

Jim Jefferies has told the Hearts board of directors that he has no intention of resigning as manager, despite a fraught weekend in which he was denied the services of two key players by club owner Vladimir Romanov. (The Scotsman)

More names linked with Killie vacancy

Former Liverpool first team coach Alex Miller and Spanish Cup-winning boss Antonio Alvarez Giraldez have both put their names forward for the vacant managerial position at Kilmarnock. Miller has been out of work since he quit AIK Stockholm and is keen to return to Scotland, where he has experience of managing Aberdeen, St Mirren and Hibs. Giraldez won the King's Cup with Sevilla but was sacked after a poor start to the season. (Daily Express)

Whittaker hits back at Lennon

Steven Whittaker has dismissed Neil Lennon's inference that Rangers have been given an easy ride in the title run-in, insisting the Ibrox side had simply blown away Motherwell and Hearts with quality football. The Rangers defender said: "Do we deserve more credit for our displays? Definitely. I think we have played some really good stuff in the last two games and scored some really good goals." (Daily Mail)

• Celtic's Darren O'Dea is on his way back to Glasgow after a season-long loan spell with Ipswich. (Daily Record)

McInnes talks to Brentford

St Johnstone manager Derek McInnes has confirmed he has spoken to Brentford but refused to discuss a possible move to the npower League One side. Although Saints chairman Geoff Brown does not believe it is the right move for the former Rangers and Dundee United midfielder, Brentford are set to offer the appropriate compensation to get their man. (The Scotsman)

Pars offer new deals

Dunfermline boss Jim McIntyre has agreed new deals for four key men but released six. The newly-promoted club have offered contracts to Martin Hardie, Andy Kirk, Joe Cardle and Chris Smith, but Greg Paterson, Kyle Allison, Neil McGregor, Chris Higgins, Alex Burke and Jake Hyde have all been freed. (The Sun)


• Dundee have announced a new seven-man board made up of supporters to oversee the club's recovery from administration.

• St Johnstone want to sign out-of-contract Falkirk striker Mark Stewart, the joint top scorer in the First Division with 15 goals.

• Dundee United will open talks with freed Hibernian midfielder John Rankin this week.

• Arbroath boss Paul Sheerin has emerged as the front-runner for the Ross County job if Jimmy Calderwood's short term deal is not extended.

• Stirling Albion have freed eight players as they prepare for life in the Second Division. Chris Aitken, Tom Brighton, Scott Christie, Ryan Borris, Andy Gibson, John Kane, Michael Doyle and Michael Mullen won't be handed new contracts.

• Morton are set to sign Hamilton's Andy Graham and Ross County striker Paul di Giacomo.

• Clyde striker Marc McCusker is set for a switch to Hartlepool after impressing on trial last week.

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