The latest news and gossip from around Scottish football.
Celtic are out
Neil Lennon’s Celtic crashed out of the Champions League last night after a shoddy defensive performance against CFR Cluj at Parkhead.
The Romanians won 4-3 on the night and 5-4 on aggregate to send Hoops tumbling into the Europa League qualifiers where they’ll face either Sheriff or AIK.
Lennon admitted after the game that failure to qualify could affect his ability this summer to spend.
Asked if the Cluj loss would affect his transfer budget, he said: “I’m sure it will, but that’s not at the forefront of my mind at the minute.
Ryan Christie says lack of street-smarts was key to Celtic’s devastating Champions League exit
“We all wanted Champions League football and we have only ourselves to blame for not getting that.
“The goals we conceded are crazy. You’ve got to do the basics well – you’ve got to stop crosses, close people down, get your head on things – and it was almost as if we scored and wanted to switch off and control the game.” (Evening Times)
Dan to Ran?
Rangers are among the favourites with bookies to sign ex-Liverpool ace Daniel Sturridge.
Sturridge has previously been linked with the Ibrox outfit on a number of occasions after leaving Anfield last season.
Aston Villa have reportedly been keen on signing the striker recently and lead the chase according the oddsmakers – the shortest team to bring him in at 7/1 with Skybet.
Glenn Middleton reveals why he joined on loan from Rangers
Steven Gerrard’s men, meanwhile, are third favourites behind Crystal Palace – who themselves are 10/1 to sign him – as Gers sit 11/1 to nab the 29-year-old.
Foreign clubs including Trabzonspor, Besiktas and Fenerbahce have also been credited with an interest in the hitman. (Evening Times)
Whelan and dealin’
Ex-Aston Villa star Glenn Whelan is reportedly closing in on a move to Hearts.
The Irishman has been in talks with Craig Levein’s men for weeks now and it is believed the move is getting closer, according to reports.
Meanwhile Man City’s Japanese player Ryotaro Meshino could join him.
The 21-year-old has been linked with Tynecastle this week by Edinburgh Live.
McPake is ‘loan target’
Rangers youth player Josh McPake is reportedly wanted on loan by a number of Scottish Premiership clubs.
Man U superstar David De Gea urges Hearts loan ace to ‘prove how good he is’ during Tynecastle spell
Dundee, St Johnstone and Ross County are keen to entice the player away from Ibrox.
McPake made his first-team debut for the Light Blues earlier this season. (The Athletic)
Killie miss out
Angelo Alessio hoped to bring Inter Milan player Facundo Colidio to Rugby Park – but was left disappointed when he signed instead for Sint-Truiden in Belgium.
The striker was a target for Kilmarnock but penned a season-long deal elsewhere.
Killie will continue to look for reinforcements elsewhere. (Daily Record)