Thursday's Scottish gossip

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FOOTBALL GOSSIP

Celtic manager Ronny Deila says he does not think Josh Meekings blocked Leigh Griffiths' goalbound header on purpose in their Scottish Cup semi-final match at Hampden on Sunday and hopes that the Inverness player will be free to play in the final. (Various)

Deila reckons the loss to Inverness was the toughest day of his career. (Various)

The Glasgow Cup final between Rangers' and Celtic's Under-17 teams will be played behind closed doors at Hampden because of crowd trouble in previous years. (Various)

Teemu Pukki
Celtic's Finnish striker Teemu Pukki is keen to make his stay in Brondby permanent

Interim Rangers chairman Paul Murray and club director John Gilligan have held talks with Sports Direct owner Mike Ashley, who has loaned the Ibrox outfit £5m and controls Rangers Retail. (Daily Mail)

Former Rangers manager Walter Smith says it is hard to judge Ally McCoist as a manager because of the turmoil that existed while he was in charge at Ibrox, and believes McCoist deserves a chance to show what he can do at a stable club. (Various)

Finnish striker Teemu Pukki will return from his loan spell at Brondby at the end of the season but is keen to head back to Denmark on a long-term move. (Daily Record)

With Jason Denayer returning to Manchester City after his loan spell and Virgil van Dijk attracting interest from clubs in England, Celtic have asked Club Brugge about their £3m-rated 22-year-old central defender Brandon Mechele. (Daily Express, Daily Record)

Hibernian manager Alan Stubbs praises his players for keeping the heat on Rangers in the race for Premiership play-off spots with their 3-1 win over Livingston in West Lothian on Wednesday night. (Various)

Hearts head coach Robbie Neilson may expect offers for winger Jamie Walker this summer but the 23-year-old player says he has no intention of leaving Tynecastle. (The Sun)

Gary Cornish
Gary Cornish, the 6ft 7in Inverness heavyweight, is in the ring in Glasgow's Bellahouston next month

Former Rangers defender John Brown insists Ally McCoist, who is on garden leave after handing in his notice as manager of the club, will be welcomed back to Ibrox because the supporters love him. (The Scotsman)

Defender Manuel Pascali, whose contract at Kilmarnock expires at the end of the season, reveals he hopes to one day be the manager at Rugby Park. (The Sun)

OTHER GOSSIP

Glasgow Warriors head coach Gregor Townsend highlights the importance of having a large squad as he reveals that 52 players have worn the Warriors jersey this season, including 43 of their own players plus those from the BT Sport Scottish Rugby Academy and loans players from Edinburgh. (The Scotsman)

Glasgow Rocks star Kieron Achara calls on basketball fans to pack the Copper Box Arena in London when he plays for Team GB against New Zealand on 25 July. (The Sun)

Inverness heavyweight boxer Gary Cornish will fight Hungary's Zoltan Csala for the vacant IBO International title at Bellahouston in Glasgow on 23 May, hoping it will set him on his way for a crack at the world title within 12 months. (The Herald)

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