Scottish Gossip: Fletcher, Brown, Scotland, Celtic, Champions League

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West Bromwich Albion midfielder Darren Fletcher is almost certain to replace Scott Brown as Scotland captain. Fletcher captained his country in this summer's two end-of-season friendlies against Italy and France. (Various)

Midfielder Brown, 31, says quitting Scotland "has probably put a couple of years" on his Celtic career. (Various)

Brown says he hung up eight times as he tried to build up the courage to call Scotland manager Gordon Strachan to say he was ending his international career. (Various)

Strachan has left the way open for Brown to reconsider but the player says his mind is made up. (Scotsman)

For Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers, the prize for beating Hapoel Beer Sheva on Tuesday evening is the prestige of playing in the Champions League, not the estimated £20m-£25m that could come the club's way with qualification. (Various)

Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers takes the team training in Israel
Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers takes the team training in Israel

Hapoel Beer Sheva manager Barak Bakhar prefers not to think about the odds against his team overturning a 5-2 first-leg deficit from Celtic Park; instead, his emphasis is on self-belief. (Herald)

Celtic have been boosted by the return to fitness of winger Patrick Roberts and right-back Mikael Lustig. (Various)

Israeli police will operate a zero-tolerance policy against any display of Palestinian flags by the 300 travelling Celtic fans. "This is a professional football game and not a political opportunity," said a police spokesman. (Scotsman)

Former Celtic goalkeeper Pat Bonner believes Craig Gordon will see off the challenge of new team-mate Dorus de Vries and remain the club's first-choice keeper. (Sun)

Mario Bilate, referring to his injury-blighted time at Dundee United, describes Dundee as a "drab, gloomy, working-class town" and says his injuries were wrongly diagnosed. The striker is now at Den Bosch in the second tier in the Netherlands. (Sun)

"Fuming" referee Craig Thomson refused to co-operate with broadcaster BT Sport on Saturday and started the second half of St Johnstone's home game against Celtic a minute early, clashing with commercial breaks. Thomson is thought to have been angered by criticism of him made on the channel by pundit Chris Sutton. (Daily Record)

Former Dundee United striker Mario Bilate
Ex-Dundee United striker Mario Bilate did not have the happiest of times in Scotland

Preston boss Simon Grayson describes Rangers' new signing from the Lilywhites, Joe Garner, as an "icon of this club". Garner scored 57 goals in 151 appearances for Preston and has now signed a three-year deal at Ibrox. (Herald)

Hearts striker Juanma could not agree personal terms with Belgian club Waasland-Beveren and so the Spaniard's move is off. (Various)

Wigan won't be bidding again for Juanma's Tynecastle team-mate Callum Paterson after Hearts rejected their offer of £600,000. (Daily Record)

However, Newcastle United are keen on Paterson...for their Under-23 team. (Sun)

Manchester United are in talks with Livingston for their £150,000-rated striker Matthew Knox. He had a trial at Old Trafford in January just after becoming Livi's youngest ever player at 16 years and four days. (Daily Mail)

Farid El Alagui is having a trial stint at Dunfermline after the former Hibs and Falkirk striker failed to win a move to Inverness Caledonian Thistle. (Herald)

Tom Hateley
Former Motherwell defender Tom Hateley could return to Scottish football after leaving Slask Wroclaw

A free agent after leaving Polish club Slask Wroclaw, full-back Tom Hateley is on Hibernian manager Neil Lennon's wish-list. (Daily Record)

Aberdeen midfielder Kenny McLean says he knows what he has to do at Pittodrie to force his way into the Scotland squad again. (Sun)

Scotland and Derby defender Craig Forsyth has suffered a second serious knee injury in 10 months, rupturing his anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee. (National)


Olympic track cycling champion Callum Skinner hopes many more children take up the sport after the British team's heroics in the Rio velodrome. (Times)

Katherine Grainger has a job for life in rowing should she want one, promises British Rowing's performance director, Sir David Tanner. (Herald)

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