Friday's Scottish Gossip: Celtic, Rangers, Dundee Utd, Hibernian, Partick Thistle

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Rangers manager Mark Warburton is sure a European Super League is not far away and wants to make sure the Ibrox club are "part of the conversation" when it happens. (The Times)

Mark Warburton also thinks the top flight should be extended to 16 teams, with a new competition set up to make up for the shortfall in fixtures. (The Times)

Striker Billy McKay reckons a win over Hibs in Saturday's Scottish Cup semi-final can have a positive impact on Dundee United's bid for Premiership survival. (Various)

Hibs boss Alan Stubbs admits he is uncertain which goalkeeper will replace suspended Mark Oxley at Hampden, choosing between Otso Virtanen, who has only played a few minutes in the first team and recent signing Conrad Logan, who has not played since being released by Leicester at the end of last season. (Scotsman)

The police chief in charge of the Scottish Cup semi-finals, Chief Superintendent Brian McInutly, has spoken to all of the clubs involved, warning players that they have a duty to avoid inflaming rival supporters. (Daily Mail)

Hampden Park
Hampden Park has had a new pitch laid in time for the Scottish Cup semi-finals

Former manager Stuart McCall reckons Rangers should consider risking Martyn Waghorn in Sunday's Scottish Cup semi-final showdown with Celtic. The striker has not played since suffering knee ligament damage in February but is refusing to rule himself out of contention. (Herald)

Hampden will be less than half full on Saturday, with Hibs and Dundee United selling around 20,000 tickets between them. (Sun)

The notorious Scottish Cup jinx will be on the minds of Hibs players and fans, says United boss Mixu Paatelainen, who had two spells as a striker at Easter Road. (Various)

Celtic will need to maintain discipline against Rangers, having lost players to red cards in the past two semi-finals they've been in, says midfielder Stuart Armstrong. (Various)

Armstrong reveals that he has never sampled the Old Firm atmosphere before, or even watched a full 90 minutes of the derby on TV. (Various)

Former Rangers manager Walter Smith reckons Mark Warburton will immediately be under pressure to stop Celtic's run of Premiership title victories. (Various)

Hampden chief executive Peter Dallas insists the newly installed pitch will be in perfect condition for this weekend's big matches. (Sun)

Dundee United midfielder Paul Paton will continue to play through the pain of a knee injury as the Tannadice team battle for cup glory and league safety. (Various)

Partick Thistle midfielder Stuart Bannigan admits he is uncertain about his future after picking up a serious knee injury last month and has not ruled out staying on at Firhill. (Herald)

Thistle are keen on recruiting Dunfermline skipper Andy Geggan over the summer. (Sun)

Inverness midfielder Liam Polworth
Polworth is said to be close to signing a new Inverness CT deal

Hibernian midfielder John McGinn is at a loss to explain his team's worrying slump in form but insists all the players are working hard to rectify the problem ahead of the semi-final and play-offs. (Various)

Goalkeeper Craig Gordon will make his 100th Celtic appearance at the weekend and is aiming to toast the occasion with a win over Rangers. (The National)

Former Celtic striker Frank McAvennie says he doesn't understand why Kris Commons is not in the Celtic team and believes the playmaker should be starting at Hampden. (Various)

Scotland U21 midfielder Liam Polworth is set to sign a three-year contract extension at Inverness Caley Thistle. (Sun)

Hearts are to offer Bulgarian striker Nikolay Todorov a deal after the 19-year-old impressed on trial, with Nottingham Forest allowing him to move on. (Sun)

Motherwell midfielder Stephen Pearson, formerly with Celtic, says it is difficult to explain the intensity of being involved in an Old Firm match. (Various)


Glasgow Warriors are playing down a report linking head coach Gregor Townsend with an impending vacancy at Harlequins. (Herald)

Following a run of unconvincing displays, world number two Andy Murray admits he's been "a bit flat" since the Davis Cup in March and says he needs to "buckle down and stop making as many mistakes". (Various)

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