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Summary

  1. Domestic league season gets under way this weekend
  2. Celtic drawn against Hapoel Beer-Sheva in Champions League play-off
  3. Missing out on top six 'wouldn't be a failure' - St Johnstone boss
  4. Aberdeen critical of referee after European exit

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

Impact of Rangers' return

BBC Scotland's Richard Wilson and Bryn Palmer assess the likely impact of Rangers' return to the top tier in Scottish football.

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Rangers are given a guard of honour by Alloa after winning the Championship last season
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Rangers are given a guard of honour by Alloa after winning the Championship last season

Shaka signs up for Hamilton

Hamilton Accies have signed Trinidad and Tobago international forward Richard 'Shaka' Roy. 

The 28-year-old joins from Defence Force in his homeland on a four-month deal after training with the New Douglas Park club during pre-season. 

Accies snap up @royboss1987 on a 4 month deal from Defence Force FC hamiltonacciesfc.co.uk/shaka-roy-sign… after international clearance granted today

Rooney extends stay at Pittodrie

Aberdeen striker Adam Rooney has agreed a new contract.

The 28-year-old has scored 60 goals in 106 appearances for the Dons.

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BREAKING NEWS | Adam Rooney has today signed a contract extension until 2020! #StandFree

BREAKING NEWS | Adam Rooney has today signed a contract extension until 2020! #StandFree

Hearts keen on Polish defender

Hearts hope to secure the signing of Polish defender Krystian Nowak, who has been on trial at the club over the past week.

The 22-year-old spent last season with Podbeskidzie Bielsko-Biała in his homeland, making 21 appearances, but his contract was not renewed.

"We are going to have a chat with his agent to see if we could get something sorted." Neilson told BBC Scotland. "He has done well and it would give us cover in the centre half department."

Referee let us down - Shinnie

Graeme Shinnie said Bulgarian referee Nikola Popov had "let Aberdeen down" after they bowed out of the Europa League with a 1-0 defeat to Maribor.

Popov awarded a penalty instead of allowing Niall McGinn's goal to stand, with Adam Rooney missing from the spot.

Substitute Jayden Stockley then received two yellow cards within 12 minutes of coming on.

"I think Jayden's sending off is shocking, I don't think it's a sending off at all," Shinnie told BBC Scotland.

Aberdeen's Jayden Stockley (centre) is shown a red card
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Aberdeen were unhappy with the referee's performance in Slovenia

Celtic in hunt for Sinclair

Celtic are stepping up their interest in Aston Villa winger Scott Sinclair.

Villa boss Roberto di Matteo confirmed today that Celtic have made an offer for the 27-year-old.

"There's no smoke without fire and there's been a lot of smoke," joked Celtic boss Brendan Rodgers. "Scott's a player I know well.

"I would really hope to sign a player before the weekend."

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Scott Sinclair
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Brendan Rodgers wants to add Scott Sinclair to his Celtic squad

Old Firm pair on the move

Transfer news

Celtic midfielder Joe Thomson, 19, is joining Championship side Dumbarton on loan until January.

Thomson, who has made one first team appearance for Celtic, signed a new two-year contract with the Scottish champions in June.

Meanwhile, Rangers and Raith Rovers have arranged a swap deal involving two more 19-year-olds.

Midfielder Jordan Thompson moves from Ibrox to Stark's Park on loan until January, with central defender David Bates going the opposite way for the same period to join the Rangers development squad.

Joe Thomson
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Thomson has been capped for Scotland at U19 level

Djoum has eye on England after signing new Hearts deal

Hearts midfielder Arnaud Djoum has signed a new three-year contract at Tynecastle but admits he has ambitions to play in England.

"I still have this ambition to go to a higher level," he said. "I preferred to sign a new deal here and be comfortable so I don't have to think too much about transfers. What happens next I don't know but I've always dreamed of playing in England so hopefully next year I can achieve that." 

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Arnaud Djoum
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Djoum scored seven goals for Hearts last season

Get Involved - Aberdeen's European exit

Stephen Stockman on Facebook: I hope they take the disappointment and hard work they put in into the league. 

Nyaoke Dimitri Nyaoke: Always looking for an excuse whenever things don't go their way. They had chances but they simply couldn't convert them. How do you explain the missed penalty? 

Grant Mitchell: If you can't score a free shot from 12 yards out, then you don't deserve to go through. Derek McInnes has no one to blame but his top striker and his bungling goalkeeper.  

Celtic's Champions League opponents

Brendan Rodgers' men will travel 2,537 miles for the second leg of their Champions League play-off against Israeli champions Hapoel Beer-Sheva. 

Having previously eliminated Moldovan outfit Sheriff Tiraspol and Greek giants Olympiacos, Hapoel will look to veteran striker Elyaniv Barda, who has already netted already in the competition, to pose Celtic problems.

Reaching the third round already represents the Israeli side's most successful venture into Europe having reached only qualifying rounds in the Europa League along with three Intertoto Cup campaigns.

Hapoel Beer Sheva fans
Getty Images
Hapoel Beer-Sheva fans are enjoying their first taste of Champions League football

Missing top six 'not a failure'

Brian McLauchlin

BBC Sport Scotland

St Johnstone boss Tommy Wright says missing out on a top six finish this season wouldn't constitute a failure for his squad.

Saints have finished in the top half of the league in each of the past five Premiership campaigns.

"Probably our fans' expectations get higher and higher each season but we don't really put any demands on the players," Wright told BBC Scotland. 

"We want to finish [in the] top six if we can and we know that over the course of the season we can do that. 

"If we were to finish seventh and miss out on the top six I wouldn't see that as a failure for our club."

St Johnstone boss Tommy Wright
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Tommy Wright is aware of the St Johnstone fans' expectations this season

Get Involved - Celtic's Champions League draw

Ciaran O'Neill on Facebook: Ideally wouldn't have gone to Israel but could have been worse. Was hoping for Dundalk....

Gordon Stacey: Not the easiest of ties, but if Celtic do them 2/3 -0 at home first, then it should be safe.

Darren Deas: Could've been worse.

Chris Cunningham: Who? If Celtic don't reach the group stage this year they never will... 

Get Involved - Champions League draw

#bbcsportscot

Champions League play-off draw

  • Celtic v Hapoel Beer-Sheva (Israel)  
  • Ludogorets Razgrad (Bulgaria) v FC Viktoria Plzen (Czech Republic)
  • FC Copenhagen (Denmark) v Apoel Nicosia (Cyprus)
  • Dundalk (Rep of Ireland) v Legia Warsaw (Poland)
  • Dinamo Zagreb (Croatia) v FC Salzburg (Austria)
  • Steaua Bucharest (Romania) v Manchester City 
  • Young Boys (Switzerland) v Borussia Monchengladbach (Germany)
  • Villarreal (Spain) v Monaco (France)

The first legs will take place on 16/17 August with the second legs on 23/24 August.

Celtic face Hapoel

Celtic are drawn to face Israel's Hapoel Be'er Sheva for a place in the group stage of the Champions League.

What do you think of the draw? Tweet us using #bbcsportscot or text using 80295 and/or visit our Facebook page.

Champions League draw

Celtic are awaiting the draw for the play-off round of the Champions League.

Brendan Rodgers' side will face one of the following:

  • Dundalik
  • Ludogorets Razgrad
  • Dinamo Zagreb
  • Hapoel Be'er Sheva
  • FC Copenhagen 

Get Involved - Aberdeen's European exit

#bbcsportscot

Nikola Popov should never be allowed another game in kids sunday league never mind the Europa league. He was awful. #bbcsportscot

Season gets under way this weekend

The wait is all but over. The Premiership season get the new season under way this weekend, starting with Rangers hosting Hamilton at Ibrox. 

Clubs in the Championship, League One and League Two are also in action.

BBC Scotland commentator Rob Maclean has identified five things he hopes to see in the new campaign.

'A title race worthy of the name'

"A serious title contest in the Premiership would be good and I think we might get it," writes Rob.

"Credit to Aberdeen for being next best to Celtic for the last two seasons but they have gone down in the end by a combined total of 32 points.

"The Dons have added to their already strong attacking options and will again be capable of beating any top-flight team on their day.

"Hearts need further progress after two successful seasons if they are to repeat their top-three finish.

"Rangers are a threat to everyone, including Celtic. If they sort their suspect defence, Mark Warburton's team can get themselves into title contention."

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From left: Dave Marshall Vice Chairman of East Fife, Mark Warburton Rangers manager, Brendan Rodgers Celitc Manager, and Allan Johnston manager of Dunfermline Athletic
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Domestic league football returns for a new season this weekend

Get Involved

#bbcsportscot

Aberdeen, like Hibs, unlucky to go out of Europe. Probably better team over tie but another hard luck story for a Scottish team.

Get Involved - Aberdeen Euro exit

#bbcsportscot

#bbcsportscot There was never a 'last man' rule, it was re: goalscoring opportunity. The rule for sending off is if it is dangerous play

Aberdeen unlucky tonight. One missed penalty last night and that could have been us out as well. Fine margin for success/failure in Europe.

Celtic await Champions League draw

Celtic will be one of the seeded teams in today's Champions League play-off round draw.

A meeting with Irish side Dundalk, who beat Belarusians BATE Borisov on aggregate, would be the shortest trip for the Scottish Premiership winners.

Brendan Rodgers' side could also face Bulgarians Ludogorets Razgrad, Croatians Dinamo Zagreb or Danish champions FC Copenhagen.

Israel's Hapoel Be'er Sheva are Celtic's other potential opponents.

Celtic, who beat Kazakh side Astana 3-2 on aggregate after Wednesday's 2-1 win in Glasgow, have lost at the play-off stage two years in a row, with defeats by Maribor in 2014 and Malmo last season.

Champions League play-off round winners progress to the group stage of the competition while losing sides drop into the Europa League group stage.

Celtic's Moussa Dembele, Scott Brown and Kieran Tierney celebrate
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Aberdeen unhappy with referee

In the first half, striker Adam Rooney was fouled by goalkeeper Jasmin Handanovic when clean through on goal.

The ball broke to Niall McGinn, who rolled into the unguarded net, but referee Popov opted to award a penalty and book Handanovic, who then saved Rooney's effort.

"He was very quick to blow for the penalty kick," McInnes said of the referee.

"Games are decided on key moments but you could say the Rooney penalty miss was defining but we still have to overcome the officials.

"The goal should stand. The new rules suggest that the double whammy of the penalty and the red card has changed now so I wasn't against that decision."

Aberdeen's Jayden Stockley is shown a second yellow card
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Jayden Stockley is shown a second yellow card against Maribor

Dons stung by European exit

Derek McInnes criticised referee Nikola Popov and his assistants following Aberdeen's 2-1 Europa League aggregate defeat by Maribor.

Substitute Jayden Stockley was sent off for two bookings within 10 minutes of his introduction from the bench and the Pittodrie side had a goal disallowed. 

They also missed a penalty and scored an own goal as the Slovenian hosts won 1-0 to reach the play-off round.

"The officials played the biggest part in the defining moments," McInnes said.

Aberdeen's Jayden Stockley (centre) exchanges words with referee Nikola Popov after he is shown a red card
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Aberdeen were upset with the officials in Slovenia