Scottish Gossip: Celtic, Rangers, Liverpool, McLeish, Hibs, Albania, St Mirren, Novo, Terry

Scottish gossip

FOOTBALL GOSSIP

Scotland head coach Alex McLeish says Monday's home game against Albania, who opened their campaign with a win over Israel, is already a must-win game as his side look to win their Nations League group and recover from Friday's bruising friendly defeat by Belgium. (Evening Times)

Head coach Alex McLeish believes that beating Albania on Monday at Hampden Park will bring the Scotland fans back onside. (Scotland On Sunday)

Former Celtic and Albania defender Rudi Vata says that his countrymen will fancy their chances on Monday against "boring" Scotland, because Alex McLeish's side have no attacking stars. (The Herald)

Albania coach Christian Panucci is reading little into Scotland's string of friendly defeats ahead of his side's Nations League visit to Hampden on Monday. (Scotland On Sunday)

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp reckons Steven Gerrard has made a good start as Rangers boss and is already whittling away the gap between his Ibrox side and Scottish champions Celtic. (Sunday Mail)

New St Mirren manager Oran Kearney says facing fellow Northern Irishman Brendan Rodgers in his first match in charge will be a dream after the Celtic boss helped him try to land the job in the summer, when Alan Stubbs was chosen instead. (Sunday Mail)

Hibernian midfielder Stevie Mallan says he was blown away with Billy Gilmour's talent when he played alongside the Chelsea 17-year-old for Scotland Under-21s. (Scottish Sun On Sunday)

Hibernian defender Steven Whittaker has explained how the club's physio team have helped him find a fitness routine that he hopes will allow him to remain a regular contributor after the 34-year-old started only 22 matches last term because of inflammation in his core area - a problem that has lingered since his time at previous club Norwich City. (Scotland On Sunday)

Former Rangers forward Nacho Novo, 39, has revealed he suffered a stroke after surviving a near fatal heart attack and that it left him paralysed and unable to speak. (Evening Times)

Former striker Nacho Novo has revealed that leaving Rangers in 2010 sent him into the depths of depression. (Sunday Mail)

Only good luck prevented fans dying in the crush before last week's Old Firm match at Celtic Park, ­Professor Dr Keith Still, Britain's leading crowd safety expert, has claimed. (Sunday Mail)

Former England defender John Terry withdrew from Saturday's Match for Cancer charity game at Celtic Park, where the 37-year-old was due to play for James Milner's side, as he is poised to sign for Spartak Moscow. (Sunday Mail)

RUGBY UNION GOSSIP

Scotland's opening World Cup warm-up match will take place in Nice as Gregor Townsend's team head to the French Riviera for the first of back-to-back encounters against Les Bleus. (Sunday Times, print edition)

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