Rumour Mill: Celtic targets | Aberdeen | Greig

Celtic target Tonev and McManaman; Aberdeen star Peter Pawlett believes Aberdeen can challenge Celtic for the title; John Greig to end his Ibrox exile; Stevie May moves to Sheffield Wednesday; Celtic should have said no to Europe reprieve says Copenhagen manager and more in Sunday’s Rumour Mill...
Ronny Deila and Celtic should have refused reinstatement to the Champion's league says Stale Solbakken. Picture: SNSRonny Deila and Celtic should have refused reinstatement to the Champion's league says Stale Solbakken. Picture: SNS
Ronny Deila and Celtic should have refused reinstatement to the Champion's league says Stale Solbakken. Picture: SNS

Celtic target Bulgarian playmaker Aleksander Tonev

Celtic are set to sign Aleksander Tonev from Aston Villa, the Sunday Post have reported that the Parkhead club have been locked in talks with the English club over the last 24 hours. Ronny Deila is understood to have targeted the winger as a top signing target. It is likely the player will be secured on a season long loan deal with a view to a more permanent deal should he perform well. (Sunday Post)

Meanwhile Wigan have warned Celtic that they won’t be able to spend their newly earned money on signing target Callum McManaman. Latics boss Uwe Rosler spoke after it was revealed by the Sun that Celtic were interested in the player, he said: “There is no chance Callum will go anywhere. Our chief executive Jonathon Jackson told me there was a phone call, but no bid. There is no big headlines. For me, key players, who we are building a future around, are NOT for sale.” (Sun)

Ronny Deila runs rule on former player Samaras

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Ronny Deila has again refused to rule out a sensational Celtic return for Giorgios Samaras. The Greek hitman is still without a club and remains a free agent after his release from Celtic. Deila said: “Of course, he’s a player we know well, we aware of him. He has good qualities but it has to be right for everybody.” (Sun)

Aberdeen star Peter Pawlett believes Aberdeen can challenge Celtic for the title

Peter Pawlett is adamant that Derek McInnes’ side can improve on last season when they finished a massive 31 points behind Celtic. He is convinced that if Aberdeen are still within touching distance of the Hoops after New Year, they can challenge Deila’s men for the title. Pawlett said: “We won’t look at Celtic. We’ll just worry about ourselves. But I don’t see why we can’t challenge them. If we are close to Celtic going into the last 10-15 games of the campaign, who knows?” (Sunday Mail)

John Greig to end his Ibrox exile

John Greig will today end his Ibrox exile out of respect for his closest friend Sandy Jardine on flag day. Greig is returning to watch the Championship opener from the Director’s box as the Govan stand is to be renamed in tribute to the Rangers and Hearts legend, who died from cancer at the age of 65 in April. Ibrox chief executive Graham Wallace paid a personal visit to Greig recently to formally extend and invitation. However it is understood that Greig’s return is not an endorsement of the under-fire Rangers regime. (Mail on Sunday)

Stevie May moves to Sheffield Wednesday

Stevie May admits he can’t wait to make his Sheffield Wednesday debut after sealing an £800,000 move from St Johnstone. The Scotland under-21 striker signed a four year deal with the Hillsborough side yesterday. (Sunday Mail)

Celtic should have said no to European reprieve says Copenhagen manager

Ronny Deila has been blasted by fellow Norwegian manager Stale Solbakken, the Copenhagen manager said he feels sick for countryman Henning Berg, he said: “I’m disappointed at Ronny and Celtic. Both as a manager and as a TV pundit, he has always talked about the importance of high standards in football. Well I hope the discussions in the backroom were better than what was said at the press conference was embarrassing. He should have explained himself better, you can’t talk of morals and ethics on and off the field if you are not following them yourself.” (Sunday Post)

‘No chance we’ll go unbeaten’ says McCoist

Ally McCoist insists anyone thinking Rangers can go through another season unbeaten is dreaming – and swears there’s “double no chance” of it happening.

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The Ibrox side romped through League One last season, winning 33 and drawing three of their 36 games, racking up 106 goals and 102 points.

But with Hearts, Hibs and a host of others gunning for Rangers, McCoist has warned their fans there are bound to be stumbles.

He said: “I’m looking forward to it. There are maybe some potential pitfalls because we will go to places where we are expected to win and may get a slap on the puss.

“But there is a greater understanding from everyone about how much tougher this will be. Can we repeat what we did last year? There is double no chance of that happening, I would think.

“If anybody was at the game on Tuesday against Hibs they might back me up on that.

“But I am really excited about the league, there is going to be a real freshness about it. Hearts and Hibs are absolutely buzzing because both have a new foundation and a new system. (Daily Record)

Deila fails in last ditch bid to keep Forster

England keeper Fraser Forster sealed his £10m switch to Southampton last night after agreeing a four year deal at St Mary’s. The Sunday Mail reported that Deila and Lawell met with the 26-year-old for last ditch talks before his trip south, hoping that another crack at Europe might change his mind. However it is believed the player wants to increase his chances of staying in the England squad and hopes the playing in England will keep him in Roy Hodgson’s plans. (Sunday Mail)

News in Brief:

• Mark Oxley was delighted after scoring on his league debut for Hibs saying “I should feel bad for the other keeper but I don’t - I don’t get many chances to celebrate like that!” (Express)

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• Lee McCulloch says he wants to help Rangers back into the Premiership before discussing a new contract. (Various)

• marcos Tavares of Maribor says his team will end Celtic’s Eurooean dream once and for all when the two teams meet in their qualifier. (Sunday Mail)