Deadline News http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk News and pictures from Scotland and beyond Sun, 22 Jan 2017 00:26:03 +0000 en-GB hourly 1 103583214 Raith Rovers midfielder Jordan Thompson hopes dumping Hearts out of Scottish Cup will impress Rangers boss Mark Warburton http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/2017/01/22/raith-rovers-midfielder-jordan-thompson-hopes-dumping-hearts-scottish-cup-will-impress-rangers-boss-mark-warburton/ http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/2017/01/22/raith-rovers-midfielder-jordan-thompson-hopes-dumping-hearts-scottish-cup-will-impress-rangers-boss-mark-warburton/#respond Sun, 22 Jan 2017 00:23:26 +0000 http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/?p=1092236 FOLLOW US ON TWITTER | FACEBOOK Raith Rovers midfielder Jordan Thompson admits dumping Hearts out of the Scottish Cup would be the perfect way to impress Rangers manager Mark Warburton. The 20-year-old is hoping that Warburton or assistant Davie Weir will be tuning in for today’s televised fourth round visit of the Tynecastle outfit. Earlier this month, Thompson

The post Raith Rovers midfielder Jordan Thompson hopes dumping Hearts out of Scottish Cup will impress Rangers boss Mark Warburton appeared first on Deadline News.

]]>
FOLLOW US ON TWITTER | FACEBOOK

Raith Rovers midfielder Jordan Thompson admits dumping Hearts out of the Scottish Cup would be the perfect way to impress Rangers manager Mark Warburton.

The 20-year-old is hoping that Warburton or assistant Davie Weir will be tuning in for today’s televised fourth round visit of the Tynecastle outfit.
Earlier this month, Thompson agreed a contract extension with Rangers until summer 2018 and also prolonged his loan with Gary Locke’s Rovers until the end of the season.
And with Premiership opposition in town this afternoon, the Belfast-born youngster is desperate to make an impression.
Thompson, who made his Rangers debut as a substitute in the November 2015 victory over Alloa said: “Playing Hearts in the Scottish Cup is a great chance for me.
“I was talking to the gaffer at Raith about how big a game it is and Davie Weir had said the same to me.
“I’m not sure if Davie or the gaffer are coming to watch the Hearts game but it’s on TV anyway.
“They will probably catch a bit of it and it’s a good chance for me to show what I can do.
“It will be tough and results haven’t really gone for us recently but we want to go out there, prove a point and hopefully get a result.
“The people at Rangers keep in touch and always ask how I am doing.
“Davie knows the gaffer well and he will also give me the odd call just to chat over things. Rangers are in constant contact so it’s good.”
Thompson made eight appearances during a temporary stint with Airdrie at the end of last season but admits that his time with Rovers has been an eye-opener, especially compared to the sterile environment of Scottish Development League football.
“Coming to Raith has been brilliant because you see a different side to the game,” added the Northern Ireland Under-21 internationalist.
“We are fighting for points and it’s a step up from 20s matches because there is so much at stake for the club.
“You learn a lot more about the work you need to do off the ball at this level and you realise how important it is to track runners.
“In 20s games for Rangers, you have a lot of the ball and are always in possession.
“Here it’s a lot different. There are times when you need to get behind the ball and really concentrate.
“Even in training, the older boys will get on to you if you don’t track your man. But that’s been good for me.”
 After Hearts recruited veteran defender Aaron Hughes earlier this month, Thompson is relishing the prospect of pitting his wits against the Northern Ireland football legend.
At 37 years of age, Hughes has not lost his motivation for the game and is still keen to add to his 103 caps.
“I really hope he plays,” stated Thompson.
“He’s been in the Northern Ireland team for a long time and he’s an idol for every young footballer in the country.
“Aaron has been a top pro for a long time. He’s 37, while I am only 20, and it would be great to play against him and learn from him.
“It’s the same at Raith, with guys like Rudi Skacel. You can only learn from them.
“Hearts have a lot of top pros in midfield and it will be good to go up against them in the Scottish Cup.”

The post Raith Rovers midfielder Jordan Thompson hopes dumping Hearts out of Scottish Cup will impress Rangers boss Mark Warburton appeared first on Deadline News.

]]>
http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/2017/01/22/raith-rovers-midfielder-jordan-thompson-hopes-dumping-hearts-scottish-cup-will-impress-rangers-boss-mark-warburton/feed/ 0 1092236
A teammate of Mario Gotze & Shkodran Mustafi for Germany – but Hearts new boy Lennard Sowah hopes Tynecastle switch can ignite Ghana dream http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/2017/01/21/teammate-mario-gotze-shkodran-mustafi-germany-hearts-new-boy-lennard-sowah-hopes-tynecastle-switch-can-ignite-ghana-dream/ http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/2017/01/21/teammate-mario-gotze-shkodran-mustafi-germany-hearts-new-boy-lennard-sowah-hopes-tynecastle-switch-can-ignite-ghana-dream/#respond Sat, 21 Jan 2017 23:55:40 +0000 http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/?p=1092234 BY ALAN TEMPLE – @CCP_Sport LENNARD SOWAH starred alongside Mario Gotze as part of the golden generation that would go on to lift the World Cup for Germany – but he hopes his move to Hearts will help him realise his dream of playing for Ghana. Sowah, who joined the Jambos earlier this month after

The post A teammate of Mario Gotze & Shkodran Mustafi for Germany – but Hearts new boy Lennard Sowah hopes Tynecastle switch can ignite Ghana dream appeared first on Deadline News.

]]>
BY ALAN TEMPLE – @CCP_Sport

LENNARD SOWAH starred alongside Mario Gotze as part of the golden generation that would go on to lift the World Cup for Germany – but he hopes his move to Hearts will help him realise his dream of playing for Ghana.

Sowah, who joined the Jambos earlier this month after turning down a new deal with Hamilton, was considered a precocious teenager when he was on the books of Arsenal and starring for Die Mannschaft at youth level.

He counts Gunners ace Shkodran Mustafi and Gotze – the man that would go on to score the only goal against Argentina in 2014 as Germany won the biggest prize of all – among former teammates in the national set-up.

However, with both of his parents hailing from Accra, and as a regular visitor to Ghana, he is now keen to catch the eye of the Black Stars.

“I played alongside Mustafi in the national team when we were around about 17 and I played with Gotze for a few games,” he recalled. “It was, of course, nice to play at youth level for your country but my parents are from Ghana and I would like to play for them now.

“I was born in Germany so it will always be a proud moment to have played for them and to watch those players win the World Cup – especially the ones I know personally. But Ghana is a hope of mine.

“It is not up to me, all I can do is play to my best for Hearts and hopefully I will get the call from them one day. I was over in Ghana during the summer on holiday so it is a place I feel close to. My parents are from Accra and playing for Ghana is a massive personal goal.

“I want to be solid for Hearts, play games and help the team forward. I believe that everything will fall into place if I do that.

“This club already has two players in the African Cup of Nations [Arnaud Djoum, Cameroon, and Faycal Rherras, Morocco] so that shows this is a good platform.”

His African dream hinges on once again impressing the very man who gave him a debut in senior football.

Avram Grant fielded Sowah as a fresh-faced 17-year-old while in charge of Portsmouth, allowing the youngster to hone his skills in the same side as the likes of David James, Kevin Prince-Boateng and Kanu.

Grant is now in charge of Ghana and – while not expecting any old pals’ act – the experienced manager will undoubtedly be inclined to take notice of one of his former players if he can dazzle for the Jambos.

Sowah continued: “Avram Grant gave me my debut at Portsmouth as a teenager and he is now the Ghana coach. I don’t think that will make it any easier to get into the team – it is about proving you are good enough on the pitch.

“However, we did have a good relationship. I was a young lad and he spoke to me and supported me.

“On the pitch he would tell me the things I was doing well and give me advice. I was training with older players and he showed a lot of faith in me. I knew I could play football, but I didn’t expect to be put in the team at such a young age and I was really happy about that.”

Sowah could make his Hearts debut against Raith Rovers this afternoon and, while international aspirations may drive him on, his immediate concern is kick-starting his career in Scotland following an underwhelming first half of the season at Hamilton.

He added: “I think I did well, but I had an injury in my hamstring and I missed a couple of games. I wish I could have played more – any player would be the same.

“Hamilton did offer me a contract, but I sat down with them and went through everything and talked to my family. It wasn’t an easy decision because I felt good at Hamilton. The gaffer [Martin Canning] was a nice guy and I felt good with the team.

“But for me it was a feeling that it was time to try and take the next step – especially when I heard Hearts were interested.”

The post A teammate of Mario Gotze & Shkodran Mustafi for Germany – but Hearts new boy Lennard Sowah hopes Tynecastle switch can ignite Ghana dream appeared first on Deadline News.

]]>
http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/2017/01/21/teammate-mario-gotze-shkodran-mustafi-germany-hearts-new-boy-lennard-sowah-hopes-tynecastle-switch-can-ignite-ghana-dream/feed/ 0 1092234
Dunfermline defender Jason Talbot to draw on Ross County disappointment in search of Scottish Cup run http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/2017/01/21/dunfermline-defender-jason-talbot-draw-ross-county-disappointment-search-scottish-cup-run/ http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/2017/01/21/dunfermline-defender-jason-talbot-draw-ross-county-disappointment-search-scottish-cup-run/#respond Sat, 21 Jan 2017 00:21:56 +0000 http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/?p=1092225 FOLLOW US ON  TWITTER | FACEBOOK JASON Talbot admits last season’s agonising Scottish Cup exit still hurts as Dunfermline seek to spark a memorable run in the competition. Still in League One, the Pars earned a replay against Ross County in the fourth round last January with a stirring display in a 2-2 draw with Ross

The post Dunfermline defender Jason Talbot to draw on Ross County disappointment in search of Scottish Cup run appeared first on Deadline News.

]]>
FOLLOW US ON  TWITTER | FACEBOOK

JASON Talbot admits last season’s agonising Scottish Cup exit still hurts as Dunfermline seek to spark a memorable run in the competition.

Still in League One, the Pars earned a replay against Ross County in the fourth round last January with a stirring display in a 2-2 draw with Ross County.

Despite another impressive performance, the Fifers then crashed out of the tournament with a 1-0 defeat in Dingwall.

They were back up north last month when they negotiated a possible banana skin against Highland League leaders Buckie Thistle to set up Saturday’s trip to face Alloa Athletic.

And Talbot, who lifted the Challenge Cup with former side Livingston, is desperate to progress and set up another crack at top-flight opponents.

He said: “The next round comes round quite quickly, so if we can keep this unbeaten run going it would be another break for us and hopefully we could get a good tie.

“Hopefully we can get a big Premiership team, possibly at home.

“We proved last year we can compete with teams in the Premiership and hopefully we can do that again and go further in the competition.

“Last season we got knocked out by Ross County but I think in the two games we deserved to go through.

“The way the first one went I thought we deserved to win that one hands down and it was always going to be difficult playing up at Ross County on a cold night.

“Hopefully we can just go out and play the way we’ve been playing in the last few weeks and get a good result.”

PERFORMANCES

Dunfermline have gone nine games without defeat after finding themselves facing a relegation battle following a poor start to life back in the Championship.

However, Allan Johnston’s men are now optimistic of getting themselves into the promotion play-off running after jumping into fifth with last weekend’s 1-1 draw with St Mirren.

Talbot insists there has been no major turnaround in the standard of performances but hopes things continue to keep clicking.

He added: “It’s nice to be on this unbeaten run. The beginning of the season wasn’t good enough, we all knew that.

“Performances weren’t actually that bad but the results were, and it’s a results-based game.

“There hasn’t been that much change, to be honest. Training’s been good, we’ve been working hard, like we have done since the beginning of the pre-season.

“But I’m glad we’ve been able to turn performances into results and hopefully we can keep this run going.”

The post Dunfermline defender Jason Talbot to draw on Ross County disappointment in search of Scottish Cup run appeared first on Deadline News.

]]>
http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/2017/01/21/dunfermline-defender-jason-talbot-draw-ross-county-disappointment-search-scottish-cup-run/feed/ 0 1092225
Frozen out at Partick Thistle to Scottish Cup final, Falkirk defender Aaron Muirhead seeking repeat of 2015 run http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/2017/01/20/frozen-partick-thistle-scottish-cup-final-falkirk-defender-aaron-muirhead-seeking-repeat-2015-run/ http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/2017/01/20/frozen-partick-thistle-scottish-cup-final-falkirk-defender-aaron-muirhead-seeking-repeat-2015-run/#respond Fri, 20 Jan 2017 23:53:14 +0000 http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/?p=1092216 FOLLOW US ON  TWITTER | FACEBOOK AARON Muirhead quickly went from being frozen out at Partick Thistle to the warm glow of a Scottish Cup final – and insists Falkirk can eye Hampden again this season. The defender joined the Bairns in January 2015 but saw his debut for the club delayed due to a knee

The post Frozen out at Partick Thistle to Scottish Cup final, Falkirk defender Aaron Muirhead seeking repeat of 2015 run appeared first on Deadline News.

]]>
FOLLOW US ON  TWITTER | FACEBOOK

AARON Muirhead quickly went from being frozen out at Partick Thistle to the warm glow of a Scottish Cup final – and insists Falkirk can eye Hampden again this season.

The defender joined the Bairns in January 2015 but saw his debut for the club delayed due to a knee injury sustained in just his third training session with the club.

After surgery helped clear the problem, he made his first appearance in the quarter-final triumph over Queen of the South in the Scottish Cup and then featured in the semi-final victory over Hibs at the national stadium.

(Pic: Gordon Whyte @geewho59)

But, after being forced to watch the 2-1 defeat to Inverness Caley Thistle from the substitute’s bench in the final, the 26-year-old is desperate for another taste of the big time.

Speaking ahead of this afternoon’s tricky trip to face Morton, he said: “We had a good run two years ago and got to the final.

“A lot of the nucleus of that team is still here and know what it’s like to get a run in the Scottish Cup, so hopefully we can go and get a positive result on Saturday and start that off.

“It was frustrating having to sit and watch the final from the sidelines. I think the gaffer was waiting and if we had scored I might have been put on to try to see the game out.

“It looked like we were going to go on and win the game but unfortunately it went the other way when Inverness hit us on the counter-attack.

“But you can’t dwell on that and you just have to look to try to do it again. It was great experience, just to be involved in that.

UNFORTUNATE

“If you had told me at the beginning of that season that I would be involved in a Scottish Cup run and go to Hampden twice I would have bitten your hand off.

“Going from not playing at Partick and then having to have an operation when I first came to Falkirk, to be part of that experience was brilliant.

“Having all the family at Hampden when we beat Hibs and then again for the cup final was great. It was just unfortunate we came away with a runners-up medal.”

Morton, who are one place above Falkirk in the league in third spot, have been beaten just once in their last 13 league games and are undefeated at Cappielow since March last year.

Muirhead added: “Morton are on a great run and if you were to pick a team you wouldn’t want to play at the moment it would probably be Morton.

“But we’ve prepared well this week and we’ll go down there with a game-plan to try to win the game.”

The post Frozen out at Partick Thistle to Scottish Cup final, Falkirk defender Aaron Muirhead seeking repeat of 2015 run appeared first on Deadline News.

]]>
http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/2017/01/20/frozen-partick-thistle-scottish-cup-final-falkirk-defender-aaron-muirhead-seeking-repeat-2015-run/feed/ 0 1092216
Hibs star Fraser Fyvie hopes Tynecastle heralds another Scottish Cup journey after reflecting on season-defining Hearts clash http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/2017/01/20/hibs-fraser-fyvie-hopes-tynecastle-heralds-another-scottish-cup-journey-reflecting-season-defining-hearts-clash/ http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/2017/01/20/hibs-fraser-fyvie-hopes-tynecastle-heralds-another-scottish-cup-journey-reflecting-season-defining-hearts-clash/#respond Fri, 20 Jan 2017 23:50:00 +0000 http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/?p=1092197 BY ALAN TEMPLE – @CCP_Sport FRASER FYVIE is adamant Hibernian’s last visit to Tynecastle was the moment they truly started to believe they could end 114 years of Scottish Cup torment and claim the Holy Grail. The classy midfielder hopes another trip to Gorgie will prove the catalyst for retaining the trophy. The Hibees’ quest

The post Hibs star Fraser Fyvie hopes Tynecastle heralds another Scottish Cup journey after reflecting on season-defining Hearts clash appeared first on Deadline News.

]]>
BY ALAN TEMPLE – @CCP_Sport

FRASER FYVIE is adamant Hibernian’s last visit to Tynecastle was the moment they truly started to believe they could end 114 years of Scottish Cup torment and claim the Holy Grail.

The classy midfielder hopes another trip to Gorgie will prove the catalyst for retaining the trophy.

The Hibees’ quest for the cup looked destined to end in disappointment again last February when Hearts raced into a 2-0 lead in their fifth-round clash, only for a looping Jason Cummings header and a 92nd-minute Paul Hanlon leveller to take the tie back to Easter Road.

Alan Stubbs’ side dumped the Jambos 1-0 in Leith before going on to defeat Inverness, Dundee United and Rangers to secure their first Scottish Cup triumph since 1902.

After insisting that stirring comeback against Hearts kick-started their campaign, Fyvie will feel right at home when they begin their defence of the competition against Bonnyrigg Rose at the same venue.

“I think that result against Hearts was definitely the moment that kicked us on,” reflected Fyvie, who also boasts an FA Cup winners’ medal from his time at Wigan Athletic.

“That game at Tynecastle gave the squad a real belief and togetherness, in terms of the resilience and determination we showed to go to the death and take the tie back to Easter Road.

“Tynecastle is a great place to play football with some nice memories, so we can only enjoy going there. It’s a good place for both teams to play. It’ll be a good occasion and we want to go through.

“I don’t see why we can’t retain the trophy. We won it last year, so hopefully we can kick on again this year.

“As the manager has said, it’s our cup to lose, so we’d obviously like to retain. It’s a privilege to win a cup but the competition starts all over again so we’ve just got to look at the Bonnyrigg game as another one we want to win.”

Fyvie admits the enormity of Hibs’ achievement last May only sunk in when he saw 150,000 lining the streets of Edinburgh for the victory parade and heard the emotional stories of supporters lapping up the triumph with generations of their family.

Fyvie, right, ahead of winning the FA Cup (Pic: Twitter @F_Fyvie)

He recalled: “Looking up Leith Walk off the open-top bus and not being able to see a bit of street – it was just people everywhere. It was fantastic; unbelievable.

“I didn’t expect scenes like that. I couldn’t believe how many fans turned up and what they were saying to us. People were thanking us because it obviously meant so much to so many.

“Generations of people had passed without seeing us win the cup, so it clearly meant a lot to people that they were able to say ‘they were there’. It was crazy. Even now, Hibs fans are still absolutely delighted with it.

“As a club we’re thriving off the success we had last year. For the players and fans, it’s given everyone the belief that we can kick on and win more cups and hopefully get promotions. As footballers, you want to be remembered by winning things.”

And he has no attention of allowing their Scottish Cup reign to end in ignominy, knowing an encounter against Junior outfit Bonnyrigg Rose possesses the capacity for an almighty giant-killing.

Fyvie added: “I’m sure they’ll be on their best form. They’ll be underdogs but we’ve looked at them this week, as we do with every team we play. We’ve prepared the same way we always do. We won’t be taking Bonnyrigg lightly.”

The post Hibs star Fraser Fyvie hopes Tynecastle heralds another Scottish Cup journey after reflecting on season-defining Hearts clash appeared first on Deadline News.

]]>
http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/2017/01/20/hibs-fraser-fyvie-hopes-tynecastle-heralds-another-scottish-cup-journey-reflecting-season-defining-hearts-clash/feed/ 0 1092197
New Hearts signing Aaron Hughes talks Thierry Henry, Wayne Rooney, Northern Ireland, Euro 2016 & missing silverware http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/2017/01/20/new-hearts-signing-aaron-hughes-talks-thierry-henry-wayne-rooney-northern-ireland-euro-2016-missing-silverware/ http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/2017/01/20/new-hearts-signing-aaron-hughes-talks-thierry-henry-wayne-rooney-northern-ireland-euro-2016-missing-silverware/#respond Fri, 20 Jan 2017 23:45:56 +0000 http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/?p=1092203 FOLLOW US ON  TWITTER | FACEBOOK AARON Hughes has amassed over 100 caps for Northern Ireland, graced a European Championships and a Europa League final, played under Kenny Dalglish, Sir Bobby Robson and Roy Hodgson and against the likes of Thierry Henry, Didier Drogba and Wayne Rooney. But he admits the one thing missing from his

The post New Hearts signing Aaron Hughes talks Thierry Henry, Wayne Rooney, Northern Ireland, Euro 2016 & missing silverware appeared first on Deadline News.

]]>
FOLLOW US ON  TWITTER | FACEBOOK

AARON Hughes has amassed over 100 caps for Northern Ireland, graced a European Championships and a Europa League final, played under Kenny Dalglish, Sir Bobby Robson and Roy Hodgson and against the likes of Thierry Henry, Didier Drogba and Wayne Rooney.

But he admits the one thing missing from his glittering CV is the silverware he is determined to now add with Hearts.

The former Newcastle United, Aston Villa and Fulham player brought a massive amount of experience, and a touch of glamour, to the Tynecastle side when he penned a short-term deal earlier this month.

After spells in Australia and in India, where he played for Kerala Blasters, it was a move the 37-year-old admits was designed to keep him in the thoughts of international manager Michael O’Neill, who now will not have far to go from his Edinburgh home to take in Hughes’ club matches.

However, as he prepares to make his Jambos debut in Sunday’s Scottish Cup encounter with Raith Rovers at Stark’s Park, the 104-times capped defender has acknowledged there is something that gnaws away at him when he surveys an incredible 20 years in football.

Hughes, who played in the 2010 Europa League cup final with Fulham, said: “I’ve worked under some great managers and played with some great players and characters. When I do finish and look back, I’ll reflect more on it.

“But I would definitely want some silverware. Out in India we got beat in the final on penalties.

“Even to have won a trophy there – although it might not be viewed as the most glamorous league – it still would have been a trophy and I really wanted to win it. It just didn’t happen.

“Is it the only thing missing from my CV? It probably is. I’ve had a couple of runners-ups but a medal of some sort would be nice.

CHAMPIONS

“When I’m finished, and looking back on all the games and the different things that have happened, it’s knowing that, at one point, yes, we were actually champions of something.

“If you ask any footballer, they would say the same thing.”

Hughes has confessed he has his sights set on prolonging his career until the end of Northern Ireland’s campaign for the World Cup in Russia next year.

The excitement of Euro 2016, where he made three appearances in the finals, convinced the stopper to play on and he could even overtake the legendary Pat Jennings’ 119 caps.

Only when he does finally hang up his boots will the player who made his Newcastle debut against Barcelona in a Champions League meeting in the Nou Camp fully appreciate what he has achieved.

But he insists there has been no sense his new team-mates are at all impressed – and rightly so, he reckons.

Asked to name his toughest opponent, Hughes said: “Thierry Henry. And at that time, with the way Arsenal were playing, they were so free and fluent and so quick as well, they were very difficult to play against.

IMPRESSED

“Drogba was difficult to play against and Rooney, not just for his finishing ability but his movement; I don’t think people realise how good his movement is, he’s actually quicker than a lot of people think.

“Again, I could sit here and reel off a load of players. When you have played as long as I have you’re bound to come up against one or two decent players.

“I think once I have finished I can sit down and start making lists.

“I don’t know [if the boys here are impressed], we haven’t really spoken about it too much.

“If they are they haven’t said anything to me yet!

“At the end of the day, I think things like that are more for afterwards, to look back on and talk about.

“Right now, for Sunday’s game, they are irrelevant, they don’t matter. It’s how I play on Sunday and what happens there.”

The post New Hearts signing Aaron Hughes talks Thierry Henry, Wayne Rooney, Northern Ireland, Euro 2016 & missing silverware appeared first on Deadline News.

]]>
http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/2017/01/20/new-hearts-signing-aaron-hughes-talks-thierry-henry-wayne-rooney-northern-ireland-euro-2016-missing-silverware/feed/ 0 1092203
Bonnyrigg Rose star Jonathan Brown talks Hearts favourite Ryan McGowan, Vladimir Romanov era & dream Hibs tie http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/2017/01/20/bonnyrigg-rose-star-jonathan-brown-talks-hearts-favourite-ryan-mcgowan-vladimir-romanov-era-dream-hibs-tie/ http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/2017/01/20/bonnyrigg-rose-star-jonathan-brown-talks-hearts-favourite-ryan-mcgowan-vladimir-romanov-era-dream-hibs-tie/#respond Fri, 20 Jan 2017 23:45:56 +0000 http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/?p=1092194 BY ALAN TEMPLE – @CCP_Sport JONATHAN BROWN has revealed that former Hearts hero Ryan McGowan has been training with Bonnyrigg Rose in the build-up to their fairytale clash with Hibs – yet has barely mentioned his own Scottish Cup exploits. However, the Rose star insists he will never stop talking about it if the Midlothian

The post Bonnyrigg Rose star Jonathan Brown talks Hearts favourite Ryan McGowan, Vladimir Romanov era & dream Hibs tie appeared first on Deadline News.

]]>
BY ALAN TEMPLE – @CCP_Sport

JONATHAN BROWN has revealed that former Hearts hero Ryan McGowan has been training with Bonnyrigg Rose in the build-up to their fairytale clash with Hibs – yet has barely mentioned his own Scottish Cup exploits.

However, the Rose star insists he will never stop talking about it if the Midlothian minnows can somehow stun the holders at Tynecastle today.

McGowan has been working with the Junior outfit to keep his fitness up during the close season in China, where he is on the books of Henan Jianye. He has been a regular at Bonnyrigg’s games, even cheering them on during their famous 1-0 win over Dumbarton in the previous round.

It is a competition the big Aussie knows well, having famously scored in Hearts’ 5-1 demolition of Hibs in the final of 2012 – but it is his pals in the Rose camp who will be out to make history this afternoon.

Brown said: “Gowser [McGowan] has been training with us for the last few weeks, which has been great.

“He’s got a bit of Scottish Cup history himself! He’s actually quite laid back so, although people might not believe it, he doesn’t actually mention winning the Scottish that often to the boys. However, when you put him in front of the press he loves a bit of the 5-1 chat!

“He was at Hearts with me and Johnny Stewart, who plays in midfield for us, and he came along to support Bonnyrigg at the Dumbarton game. He tries to get along to watch us and has always been a good mate and influence.

“This game is just as massive for us. Gowser might not talk about his 5-1 game much, but you’ll never get me to shut up about it if we manage to beat Hibs on Saturday!”

McGowan lends his support to the Rose cause

On his chances of a McGowan-style strike against the Hibees, Brown laughed: “It would be my first goal in about two years – so it would be a good time for it!”

Brown’s friendship with McGowan was fostered in the youth ranks at Hearts, during the tumultuous reign of Vladimir Romanov.

A talented generation of players including Brown, Mark Ridgers, Conrad Balatoni and Johnny Stewart – now also at Bonnyrigg – were largely overlooked as the Jambos pursued big-money imports and Lithuania talent.

Looking back on his five years in Gorgie is a bittersweet burden for Brown, who will always cherish his apprenticeship at Tynecastle yet regret that he was never given an opportunity to play for the club amid a “crazy” period of their history.

He continued: “I enjoyed my time at Hearts. I learned a lot, I definitely saw a lot. It was during the Lithuanian ownership and there was a lot going on that could make things challenging.

“It was a crazy time. You had your managers coming in and out all the time, and you had the same with the players. There was a lot of disharmony with the older Scottish players – guys like [Paul] Hartley and [Steven] Pressley.

“As a younger boy, you sit in the dressing room, stay quiet and just sort of take it all in. Now, being older and having been around a few other clubs to compare it with, I can say that was pretty manic.

“You’d go into training and there would be four new Lithuanian lads there, you’d play a reserve game and be in the same team as someone you had never met before . . . I was there just trying to guess their name!

“You could have a joke about it but, at the same time, a lot of the boys were unhappy about the ways things were going.

“It was a lot more tough for a young player to get a chance compared to what they get now, but Hearts were good to me for five years and I would never have a bad word to say against the club.”

So it will be a poignant moment for Brown when he steps on to the Tynecastle turf today – and an opportunity he intends to make the most of.

He added: “It doesn’t get any better than this, especially with the fact the stadium is a sell-out. I just can’t wait and I know all the boys feel the same – it’s been like that since the tie was announced.”

The post Bonnyrigg Rose star Jonathan Brown talks Hearts favourite Ryan McGowan, Vladimir Romanov era & dream Hibs tie appeared first on Deadline News.

]]>
http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/2017/01/20/bonnyrigg-rose-star-jonathan-brown-talks-hearts-favourite-ryan-mcgowan-vladimir-romanov-era-dream-hibs-tie/feed/ 0 1092194
Stranraer caretaker boss Chris Aitken gets advice from brother in a bid to cause Aberdeen cup upset http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/2017/01/20/stranraer-caretake-boss-chris-aitken-gets-advice-brother-bid-cause-aberdeen-cup-upset/ http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/2017/01/20/stranraer-caretake-boss-chris-aitken-gets-advice-brother-bid-cause-aberdeen-cup-upset/#respond Fri, 20 Jan 2017 23:10:56 +0000 http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/?p=1092166 FOLLOW US ON TWITTER | FACEBOOK Stranraer caretaker manager Chris Aitken admits he has taken tips from big brother Stevie in a bid to cause a major Scottish Cup upset at Aberdeen today. Aitken will take charge of the fourth round clash at Pittodrie after Brian Reid left the Blues by mutual consent on Monday with the club

The post Stranraer caretaker boss Chris Aitken gets advice from brother in a bid to cause Aberdeen cup upset appeared first on Deadline News.

]]>
FOLLOW US ON TWITTER | FACEBOOK

Stranraer caretaker manager Chris Aitken admits he has taken tips from big brother Stevie in a bid to cause a major Scottish Cup upset at Aberdeen today.

Aitken will take charge of the fourth round clash at Pittodrie after Brian Reid left the Blues by mutual consent on Monday with the club rooted to the bottom of League One.

Despite having been Reid’s assistant, Aitken admits he has asked sibling and Dumbarton manager Stevie for advice ahead of the tie.

He said: “It’s pretty well know that off the pitch we’re best friends as well and we work together during the day.

“I have been picking his brain over the past week, thinking about formations to play and what sort of stuff Aberdeen might do.

“That’s been good as it’s all relatively new to me. I’ve usually got the easy role of organising the warm-up and backing the manager up, but come Saturday it’s me that’s doing it all.

“We’ll look to go and enjoy it because there’s no pressure on us. Hopefully we can go out there and express ourselves.

“We’re massive underdogs, there’s a massive gulf in the leagues and everything else that comes with it. In football, anything can happen and you have to go and believe that you can perform on this stage.”

Stranraer yesterday confirmed that Stevie Farrell will become the club’s new manager after the weekend and Aitken is delighted with the appointment of the Sons number two.

He said: “It’s a great appointment, nobody likes to see anyone lose their job and it was unfortunate what happened to Brian.

“I spoke to Stevie and he asked me to be his assistant manager going forward so from that point of view I’m really chuffed. I played under Stevie for a few years at Stranraer and coaching-wise he is definitely the best I’ve worked with. I’m looking forward to learning many new things off him.”

The post Stranraer caretaker boss Chris Aitken gets advice from brother in a bid to cause Aberdeen cup upset appeared first on Deadline News.

]]>
http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/2017/01/20/stranraer-caretake-boss-chris-aitken-gets-advice-brother-bid-cause-aberdeen-cup-upset/feed/ 0 1092166
‘I’m not ‘ripping up’ squad’ insists Hearts head coach Ian Cathro despite more changes than expected http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/2017/01/20/im-not-ripping-squad-insists-hearts-head-coach-ian-cathro-despite-changes-expected/ http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/2017/01/20/im-not-ripping-squad-insists-hearts-head-coach-ian-cathro-despite-changes-expected/#respond Fri, 20 Jan 2017 23:10:46 +0000 http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/?p=1092211 FOLLOW US ON  TWITTER | FACEBOOK IAN Cathro could hand as many as four new signings their debuts this weekend – but the Hearts head coach insists he is not intent on ‘ripping up’ the squad he has inherited. It has been a busy January so far for the Gorgie boss, with Northern Ireland stalwart Aaron

The post ‘I’m not ‘ripping up’ squad’ insists Hearts head coach Ian Cathro despite more changes than expected appeared first on Deadline News.

]]>
FOLLOW US ON  TWITTER | FACEBOOK

IAN Cathro could hand as many as four new signings their debuts this weekend – but the Hearts head coach insists he is not intent on ‘ripping up’ the squad he has inherited.

It has been a busy January so far for the Gorgie boss, with Northern Ireland stalwart Aaron Hughes, defenders Lennard Sowah and Andraz Struna, and midfielder Malaury Martin having been recruited.

With former club captain Alim Ozturk, defender Igor Rossi, strikers Tony Watt and Juanma, and summer signing Robbie Muirhead all leaving in recent days, Cathro has wasted no time in putting his own stamp on Tynecastle since taking over from Robbie Neilson last month.

However, the former Valencia and Newcastle United number two is adamant it has not been his intention to oversee a Jambos revolution.

Speaking ahead of Sunday’s Scottish Cup clash with Raith Rovers at Stark’s Park, he said: “It is not something that necessarily I had a pre-set idea about – like we need this number or that number.

“It was a case of looking at the situation and really trying to manage things on an individual basis and saying ‘how can we improve what we have?’.

“One of the things behind that is we have got guys here who are at a point in their life where they want to be playing and they are not playing.

“With a bit of honesty and a bit of will there, we can create the situation where they can go and play.

“And if somebody goes then somebody has to come. We weren’t a massive squad at that point anyway.

“I don’t feel like we have done a lot. I am aware that we have perhaps done more than other clubs but nothing has been ripped up.

DRASTIC

“It has been individual situations and us trying to do the right thing – always, of course, for the club but sometimes as well for people.

“It really hasn’t been drastic. The number is a higher number than maybe we thought but it has not been a drastic thing.”

Cathro insists he is not interested in signing Michael O’Halloran from Rangers and only went as far as to say that Stevie May is the kind of striker he is seeking to recruit this month.

In his immediate thoughts is a cup tie live on television with Championship opponents he accepts could make life difficult for Hearts.

He added: “I just want to go and win. Everyone is quite clear about what we expect to face.

“We understand how difficult it will be at the start and if we don’t get it right it will get more difficult – and if we do get things right it may become less difficult.

“We are quite clear about what we have to do, what we want to do and we are scratching to get going, really.”

The post ‘I’m not ‘ripping up’ squad’ insists Hearts head coach Ian Cathro despite more changes than expected appeared first on Deadline News.

]]>
http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/2017/01/20/im-not-ripping-squad-insists-hearts-head-coach-ian-cathro-despite-changes-expected/feed/ 0 1092211
Livingston add another signing ahead of East Fife Scottish Cup tie and are keen on Hearts striker http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/2017/01/20/livingston-add-another-signing-ahead-east-fife-scottish-cup-tie/ http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/2017/01/20/livingston-add-another-signing-ahead-east-fife-scottish-cup-tie/#respond Fri, 20 Jan 2017 23:05:40 +0000 http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/?p=1092137 FOLLOW US ON TWITTER | FACEBOOK Livingston manager David Hopkin has made his third January signing after recruiting former fans favourite Keaghan Jacobs on a deal until the end of the season. The midfielder has returned to the West Lothian club after departing in summer 2015 to join South African side Bidvest Wits, and could play in today’s

The post Livingston add another signing ahead of East Fife Scottish Cup tie and are keen on Hearts striker appeared first on Deadline News.

]]>
FOLLOW US ON TWITTER | FACEBOOK

Livingston manager David Hopkin has made his third January signing after recruiting former fans favourite Keaghan Jacobs on a deal until the end of the season.

The midfielder has returned to the West Lothian club after departing in summer 2015 to join South African side Bidvest Wits, and could play in today’s Scottish Cup visit of East Fife.

Hopkin has already snapped-up defender Declan Gallagher and midfielder Mark Millar and is also keen to sign Hearts striker Nikolay Todorov on a contract until the summer after the 20-year-old Bulgarian’s loan at Cowdenbeath expired.

Speaking about Jacobs, who came through the club’s youth system, Hopkin said: “We are delighted to add Keaghan to our first team squad.

“I know him well from his previous spell at the club. He is a great professional on and off the park and a very good footballer.”

Livingston striker Liam Buchanan, meanwhile, insists he is not surprised by the impact Barry Smith has made at East Fife after playing under the 42-year-old at Alloa.

Former Dundee boss Smith has led the Fifers to four victories, including a League One win over the Lions, and a draw since replacing Gary Naysmith last month,

Buchanan, who has already notched 20 goals this season, said: “It’s not going to be easy, Barry Smith just won manager of the month and Jonathan Page won the player of the month.

“They’ve got quality in their side with a good manager and we know they’ll be set up well.

“I played under Barry at Alloa so I know him well. I was impressed with the time I had with him at the club.

“They’re good going forward and defensively they’ve got one of the best in the league.

“He’s a got a lot of experience to give and it looks like he’s gone to the right club.”

East Fife boss Smith said: “Although we won the last meeting between the sides we will have to be at our very best if we want to be in the draw for the next round on Sunday.

“It could also be good financially for the club, but we have got to concentrate on the game first.”

The post Livingston add another signing ahead of East Fife Scottish Cup tie and are keen on Hearts striker appeared first on Deadline News.

]]>
http://www.deadlinenews.co.uk/2017/01/20/livingston-add-another-signing-ahead-east-fife-scottish-cup-tie/feed/ 0 1092137