Thursday's Scottish Gossip

FOOTBALL GOSSIP

Celtic have had talks with Stromsgodset about £1.9m-rated midfielder Stefan Johansen, the current player of the year in Norway, and are also interested in Sporting Lisbon winger Carlos Mane.

Full story: The Sun (print edition)

Mahmoud Hassan, the 19-year-old Egyptian forward, has reluctantly agreed to put his transfer to Celtic on hold until the summer after Al-Ahly informed him he is not for sale.

Full story: The Herald 

Huddersfield Town do not expect a formal bid from Celtic for Oliver Norwood as they value the midfielder at £3m - double what the Scottish champions are willing to pay.

Full story: The Sun (print edition)

Coventry City manager Steven Pressley has opened talks with Celtic over a £200,000 January bid for 20-year-old midfielder Dylan McGeouch, although the League One club will settle for a loan deal if their signing embargo is not lifted.

Stefan Johansen in action for Norway

Celtic are being linked with Stefan Johansen, who has been capped five times for Norway

Full story: Daily Record 

Celtic's Dutch defender, Virgil van Dijk, admits he is flattered in reported interest from Arsenal and Manchester City, but the 22-year-old insists he is happy at the Scottish champions.

Full story: Daily Express 

Celtic defender Virgil van Dijk feared he would never play football again after a stomach abscess filled his body with poison in 2010 before switching from Groningen to the Scottish champions.

Full story: Daily Record 

Tony Watt has admitted that he was persuaded to return on loan to Belgian club Lierse by the Celtic manager Neil Lennon despite the striker saying before Christmas that he was homesick and being embroiled in a series of disputes with coach Stanley Menzo.

Full story: The Herald 

Spartak Moscow and Republic of Ireland winger Aiden McGeady is set for a medical at Everton after the Glasgow-born player agreed contract terms with the Merseyside club.

Full story: Daily Mirror 

Rowan Vine has insisted he does not want to just sit and pick up his wages for the final six months of his contract if he is not in Hibernian manager Terry Butcher's plans, the striker having been informed he can leave the Edinburgh club.

Full story: The Herald 

Brighton & Hove Albion have rejected a transfer request from Scotland midfielder Liam Bridcutt, who is wanted by former manager Guy Poyet, now with Sunderland.

Full story: Daily Star 

Rangers are poised to make across-the-board cuts in excess of £1m, with grim implications for manager Ally McCoist as he prepares his squad for life in the Championship next season.

Full story: Daily Mail 

Talks between Ally McCoist and Rangers chief executive Graham Wallace are expected to continue over the coming days, but so far the manager has not been told to sell any of his top stars.

Full story: Daily Record 

Alloa Athletic manager Paul Hartley says former Scotland forward Derek Riordan, who has not played competitively since December 2012, is not fit enough to be offered a contract despite training with the Championship club for two months.

Full story: The Herald (print edition)

Swansea City are the latest club to express an interest in Falkirk midfielder Jay Fulton, but they face competition from Bolton Wanderers, Blackburn Rovers and Wolves for the 19-year-old who is out of contract in the summer.

Full story: The Herald (print edition)

Burton Albion are keen to take back Calvin Zola after the striker failed to become a first-team regular with Aberdeen since his summer move from the League Two outfit.

Mahmoud Hassan celebrates with Al-Ahly

Mahmoud Hassan is said to be joining Celtic in the summer

Full story: Daily Express (print edition)

Jamie Murphy has distanced himself from a move to Hibernian, with the former Motherwell forward voicing his determination to secure a regular place with Sheffield United.

Full story: Daily Express (print edition)

Bryan Jackson, of Hearts' administrator BDO, has said that the club will launch a second bid to have their signing embargo lifted next week, and a number of players willing to play for a nominal fee are thought to be waiting in the wings.

Full story: The Scotsman 

A second Hearts bid to have their signing embargo lifted already looks doomed to failure as St Mirren, Kilmarnock, Partick Thistle and Ross County, who are all in the bottom half of the Premiership table along with the Edinburgh club, insist the punishment must remain in place until they are out of administration.

Full story: Daily Record (print edition)

The Scottish Professional Football League is on standby to come up with a radical revamp of its domestic calendar after it emerged that World Cup 2022 is set to be moved to winter.

Full story: Daily Record (print edition)

Scottish Professional Football League chief executive Neil Doncaster has weighed into the World Cup 2022 row by insisting that Scots officials will be consulted before any decision is made on moving the showpiece to winter.

Full story: Daily Express 

Scotland are close to confirming a friendly in Australia before their hosts travel to the World Cup finals in the summer.

Full story: The Herald (print edition)

Jim McInally has had a four-game suspension halved, the Peterhead manger having asked referee John McKendrick and his assistants to move from a dining area after a match against East Stirlingshire on 16 November because he did not want any of his players to be reported for remarks they might make.

Full story: The Scotsman 

Outspoken Morton manager Kenny Shiels says he will not be doing any match-day interviews - on doctor's orders because he becomes emotionally imbalanced.

Full story: The Sun (print edition)

OTHER GOSSIP

The International Rugby Board has stepped into the Heineken Cup row and is ready to summon all six rugby unions and relevant club bodies to a summit meeting in a last-ditch bid to salvage the future of top-class European club rugby and prevent an English breakaway.

Full story: The Scotsman 

Prop Willem Nel insists that Edinburgh are not losing their Scottish identity despite Afrikaans now being spoken by among a number of the Pro12 club's players,.

Full story: The Scotsman 

Murrayfield's parasitic worm infestation has reached a "manageable level" according to the latest update from rugby's national stadium.

Full story: Daily Telegraph 

Pete Steindl has broken his silence on his departure as Scotland's national cricket coach, the Australian saying that leading the side will remain a treasured memory despite failure in November to qualify for the T20 World Cup.

Full story: The Herald