Transfer Deadline Day live: Chelsea insist no Â£40m bid for Dembele | Hibs fail in Stokes bid | Ambrose leaves for Blackburn
With numerous Scottish sides looking to strengthen before the transfer window slams shut, we take a look at all the latest transfer rumours, breaking news and done deals.
00.01: AND THAT’S IT! The transfer window is now shut. Congratulations if your club was desperately holding on to a star player, you have survived. Of course, there’s always extra time to push through deals in the hours after the window closes, but the only ones in the pipeline are a potential move to Motherwell for Nadir Cifti (I think Celtic fans will cope) and Efe Ambrose going to Blackburn on loan (ditto). We hope you enjoyed the blog throughout the day and join us on Wednesday for some reaction to the latest business in the January window.
23.59: Chelsea manager Antonio Conte has insisted there was no £40m bid for Celtic striker Moussa Dembele, despite reports in France stating the contrary. The Italian stressed that talk of an official offer was “just speculation” as the 20-year-old striker remained a Celtic player despite interest from the English Premier League side.
23.57: DONE DEAL: Nottingham Forest have completed a loan signing of Scottish international Ross McCormack from Aston Villa.
23.56: The Efe Ambrose to Blackburn deal is back on, according to the player. Official confirmation has yet to be announced, but reports are suggesting the 28-year-old will sign on loan for the Championship side for the remainder of the season. He’ll join ex-Celtic team-mates Charlie Mulgrew and Anthony Stokes at Ewood Park.
23.47: DONE DEAL: After much speculation throughout the day, a player has finally exited Celtic Park. Unfortunately for Celtic’s rivals, it’s reserve goalkeeper Leo Fasan. The stopper has went to Port Vale, who sold prior No.1 Jak Alnwick to Rangers, on loan until the summer.
23.06: DONE DEAL: St Johnstone have made a late addition to their squad by signing right back Clive Smith on loan from Preston North End until the summer. Staying on Tayside, Dundee United have replaced Tobe Obadeyi (who’s joined Oldham) with attacker Alex Nicholls from League Two Barnet.
23.01: The agent of Kris Commons has confirmed the midfielder will remain with Celtic until the end of the season. Hibs were linked with a second move for the veteran playmaker, who spent a month on loan at Easter Road after joining on an emergency loan. Meanwhile, Efe Ambrose could be set to stay at Celtic after his move to Blackburn Rovers hit a late snag.
22.47: BBC Scotland are reporting that Hibs have failed in their attempts to lure Anthony Stokes back to the club from Blackburn. The Easter Road side have given up hope with the midnight deadline fast approaching.
21.40: Hibs are still holding out hopes of recruiting Anthony Stokes from Blackburn before the window closes at midnight tonight. Rovers boss Owen Coyle admitted earlier today that enquiries had been made about the striker who hasn’t started in the league since August.
20.44: DONE DEAL: Scottish striker Jordan Rhodes has sealed a £10million move from Middlesbrough to Sheffield Wednesday.
20.39: Reports in France claim Celtic knocked back a £40million offer from Chelsea for Moussa Dembele - and that the striker didn’t want to leave Celtic Park. FORTY-MILLION-POUNDS.
20.27: DONE DEAL: St Mirren have announced the signing of former Hearts and Hibs defender Adam Eckersley until the end of the season.
20.06: Motherwell have admitted their interest in Nadir Ciftci, while stating the deal to sign free agent Stephen Pearson should be completed tomorrow. There are also reports they’ve bolstered their goalkeeping options with a loan deal for Sunderland teenager Oliver Pain. It’s not all good news, however, as Scott McDonald’s move to Australia could be back on.
20.03: Hamilton boss Martin Canning revealed he had missed out on several targets including Billy Mckay, who lined up against his team at the SuperSeal Stadium for visitors Inverness CT.
19.55: Tope Obadeyi has left Dundee United by mutual consent. The midfielder joined last summer after leaving Kilmarnock.
19.45: DONE DEAL: Partick Thistle have Jason Banton on loan until the end of the season. The ex-Liverpool academy product joins from Crawley Town and can operate both on the wing and up front.
18.53: Motherwell are in talks with Celtic to sign striker Nadir Ciftci on loan. The ex-Dundee United star travelled to the Netherlands earlier on transfer deadline day but couldn’t win a move. Meanwhile, the Fir Park side are likely to sign Stephen Pearson for a third time. The veteran is a free agent, so the move does not have to be completed before midnight.
18.37: DONE DEAL: Kilmarnock have signed striker Joshua Umerah on loan from Charlton until the end of the season. If we’re only counting Scott Boyd once (he signed on loan during the summer and made the deal permanent earlier today), then that takes Lee Clark’s total to 22 signings so far this term. Twenty-two!
18.02: Moussa Dembele has made it known through his official Twitter account that he is not leaving Celtic in the January transfer window. The striker posted a half-and-half image of himself pulling a similar pose to that of Leonardo DiCaprio in the Hollywood film The Wolf of Wall Street. The picture of DiCaprio lends itself to a popular meme, which quotes a famous line from the film in which the star screams “I’m not f*****g leaving”. It’s an unusual, but brilliant, way for the striker to end speculation over his move to Chelsea.
17.50: Moussa Dembele is on his way back to Glasgow having had his knee scan in London. Many supporters theorised that Dembele being in the capital on deadline day at the same time Chelsea were linked with his signature was too much of a coincidence. Although, that’s exactly what the situation seems to be, as the player looks certain to remain at Celtic.
17.38: DONE DEAL: Dario Zanatta has returned on loan to Queen’s Park. The Hearts attacker spent time on loan at the League One club earlier in the campaign and, despite playing three times for the Hearts first-team upon the conclusion of his initial loan, has been shipped back to Hampden Park for the remainder of the season. Celtic youngster Aidan McIlduff has also gone on loan to Gus McPherson’s side.
17.34: DONE DEAL: Dundee have completed the capture of ex-Ross County midfielder Marc Klok until the end of the season. The Dutchman, who made six appearances for the Staggies at the beginning of the 2014/15 campaign, impressed during a trial period.
17.26: Having previously looked on his way out of Celtic, Nadir Ciftci looks set to remain at the Ladbrokes Premiership leaders having so far failed to win a deal with a club in the Netherlands. The 24-year-old has played only twice this season, both times against Lincoln Red Imps in Champions League qualifiers way back in July.
17.20: DONE DEAL: Conor Sammon has completed his loan move from Hearts to Kilmarnock. The striker scored only once in 22 domestic games for the Tynecastle club since signing on a three-year deal this summer.
16.54: DONE DEAL: Dundee have completed the signing of Henrik Ojamaa on loan from Go Ahead Eagles until the end of the season. The Estonian will give Paul Hartley’s side some much-needed width in attack. He previously enjoyed two spells at Motherwell, though the first one was much more fruitful than his return in the 2014 summer window.
16.29: Dundee have shipped out striker Yordi Teijsse on loan to German side Wuppertaler until the end of the season. The Dees are still hopeful of adding to their squad before the window closes and this move could free up some funds to make a signing or two.
15.23: It’s all gone a little quiet. The latest news concerns Stevie May. The former St Johnstone striker had been linked with Aberdeen and Hearts among several other Scottish sides during the transfer window. However, it appears he’s set to stay at Preston.
14.40: DONE DEAL: Scott Boyd has signed for Kilmarnock on a permanent deal after having his contract terminated early by Ross County. Boyd, 30, joined on loan in the summer window and has been a regular in the Rugby Park side. He now signs permanently on an 18-month deal.
14.19: Conor Sammon has taken a step closer to re-joining Kilmarnock on loan from Hearts. The clubs have agreed how much of the player’s wages will be covered by the Ayrshire side, paving the way for Sammon to contend for regular first-team football, having been pushed down the pecking order at Hearts by the signing of Esmael Goncalves.
14.03: Partick Thistle manager Alan Archibald does not expect to do any more business after signing Niall Keown on loan from Reading last week. Archibald said: “I think that’s us. We got a couple of knockbacks yesterday on our targets so I don’t think anything is going to happen.”
13.41: Chelsea look set to drop their interest in Celtic’s Craig Gordon with Asmir Begovic now likely to stay with the English Premier League leaders. Bournemouth were hopeful of signing the Bosnia and Herzegovinainternational, though Chelsea were only willing to let him go if a replacement could be sought. They wanted Gordon but Celtic refused to consider any offer and are now set to secure the No.1 at Parkhead on an improved three-and-a-half year deal.
13.38: There will be no further transfer activity at Rangers as manager Mark Warburton says “business is done” for the January window. The Ibrox club added Jak Alnwick from Port Vale along with loan deals for Emerson Hyndman and Jon Toral.
13.29: Lonsana Doumbouya has left Inverness, with reports suggesting he is on his way to Austria. The Guinean struck five times in his first 11 games for Foran’s team but has since scored just once since November.
13.10: Nadir Ciftci has reportedly travelled to the Netherlands to complete a move away from Celtic. It is not yet known whether it’ll be a permanent deal or a loan switch.
12.46: Aberdeen boss Derek McInnes has described the potential deal taking Jonny Hayes to Cardiff City as “dead”. The English Championship side made another offer for the Irish winger at the weekend, but it still fell well short of Aberdeen’s valuation, thought to be around £1million.
12.28: Nottingham Forest and Blackburn Rovers have emerged as the leading contenders to sign Celtic outcast Efe Ambrose on loan until the end of the season. The 28-year-old’s time at Parkhead is surely up regardless of whether a move can be completed, seeing as the Nigerian’s contract expires this summer.
12.23: Dundee United will not be receiving the previously mooted £1million windfall from Andrew Robertson’s transfer to Burnley, as Hull City coach Marco Silva insists the highly-rated left back is going nowhere.
12.03: DONE DEAL: Celtic youngster Jamie McCart has moved on loan to Inverness CT for the remainder of the season. Meanwhile, Caley Thistle could be set to say goodbye to striker Lonsana Doumbouya with reports linking him with a move to Austria.
11.39: Dundee are set to sign ex-Motherwell winger Henrik Ojamaa according to reports in the Netherlands. The 25-year-old Estonian could join on loan from Eredivisie side Go Ahead Eagles for the remainder of the season and fill Dundee’s pressing need for a wide player.
11.28: DONE DEAL: Billy McKay has re-signed for Inverness CT on loan from Wigan Athletic for the remainder of the season. The 28-year-old will look to bolster the Highland club’s attack as they currently sit bottom of the Scottish top flight. The Northern Irishman netted 60 goals in a three-and-a-half year spell with the club earlier in his career.
11.25: DONE DEAL: Matt Gilks has completed his transfer from Rangers to Wigan Athletic. The 34-year-old joined the Ibrox club last summer and was expected to fight Wes Foderingham for the No.1 jersey. In the end, he was restricted to appearances in the Betfred Cup and his exit looked assured when Rangers signed Jak Alnwick from Port Vale for £250,000 yesterday.
11.12: Erik Sviatchenko meeting his agent on transfer deadline day is just a coincidence, according to Sky Sports. The player’s representative jetted into Glasgow last night amid reports linking the player with Leicester and Southampton. It is now understood it’s just a run-of-the-mill get together for agent and client, and he’ll be expected to stay at Celtic.
11.07: Two ex-Partick Thistle youngsters look set to secure moves to the Championship. Declain McDaid was released early on transfer deadline day, allowing him to try and complete negotiations with Ayr United, while David Syme is set to re-join former boss Gary Locke at Raith Rovers following his contract being terminated by the Firhill club.
11.06: Former Rangers midfielder Gedion Zelalem has left Arsenal to join VVV Venlo on loan until the end of the season. Zelalem played 28 times for the Ibrox club last season as Mark Warburton’s side won the Ladbrokes Championship.
10.51: The Irish Sun are reporting that Conor Sammon could be set to exit Tynecastle for a return to Kilmarnock. Rugby Park is where Sammon had the most productive spell of his career, banging in 18 goals in the first half of the 2010-11 season and leading to a big-money move to Wigan Athletic. Since returning to Scotland he’s struggled badly for goals and hasn’t netted in a maroon shirt since August.
10.38: Hearts boss Ian Cathro says the Edinburgh club are unlikely to add to the first-team squad further having tied up three signings on the eve of transfer deadline day. However, don’t be too surprised if they look to bring in another defender at some point after the window. The deal to sign Greek centre-back Anastasios Avlonitis was already in the works when John Souttar went down against Celtic with what’s expected to be an Achilles tendon injury that’ll keep him out the rest of the reason. Hearts may seek short-term cover in the free agent market.
10.27: Moussa Dembele is on his way to London... but only for a scan on his knee. The striker was absent from Celtic’s 4-0 victory over Hearts at the weekend and he’s travelled to the UK capital to find out the full extent of the issue. There was a brief second, after a picture of Dembele flying to London appeared on Twitter, where every Celtic fan felt their heart skip a beat.
10.23: Chelsea will turn their attention to Brighton keeper David Stockdale if they are unsuccessful in their pursuit of Craig Gordon. Chelsea have made two bids for the Celtic stopper, with Brendan Rodgers insisting the Scottish international will be going nowhere.
10.01: Update on an earlier story, it now appears that Reading (and not Nottingham Forest) will win the chase to sign Rangers target Reece Oxford from West Ham United on loan.
09.55: The latest from around the top flight: Partick Thistle, Motherwell and Dundee are all in the hunt for more additions with the Lanarkshire club’s pursuit of Stephen Pearson possibly going beyond the deadline.
Kilmarnock could spend some of their £750,000 Souleymane Coulibaly windfall on bringing in attacking reinforcements.
Ross County appear to have done all of their business while St Johnstone boss Tommy Wright confirmed there would be no transfer-deadline action in Perth, though Saints did tie up Ricky Foster and David Wotherspoon on new contracts yesterday evening.
Meanwhile, Nadir Ciftci could be set to leave Celtic on loan, though it’s expected the striker will move abroad rather than to another Premiership side.
09.42: Hibs have launched an attempt to bring back former striker Anthony Stokes, according to the Scottish Sun. Stokes has enjoyed two spells at Easter Road, including netting a double in the Scottish Cup final victory over Rangers in May last year. Since moving from Celtic to Blackburn last summer he’s struggled for playing time, making only four stars, and could be keen to reunite with ex-boss Neil Lennon.
09.33: Kieran Tierney will not be on his way to Sunderland, as it’s been revealed the Black Cats have ended their interest in the Celtic player. The EPL strugglers were on the look for a new left-back, but appear to have settled for Bryan Oviedo from Everton. The Costa Rican, at £7.5million, costs half of the £15million fee Celtic would have demanded for Tierney.
09.17: Efe Ambrose has revealed that he will definitely not be joining Hibs in the January window. The centre-back was a reported target of the Easter Road club, however Ambrose told Owngoalnigeria.com that he’s definitely not signing for the Hibees and expects to leave Celtic this summer.
08.51: Scott McDonald has opened up about the potential move to Australia that, it was rumoured, caused the striker to start Motherwell’s Scottish Cup clash with Rangers from the bench. Sydney Wanderers were interested in bringing the native Aussie home, but Motherwell declined against accepting the offer and kept the player at Fir Park.
08.31: Rangers yesterday added goalkeeper Jan Alwick from Port Vale and it remains to be seen whether that will conclude their business for the January window. It looks likely that the Ibrox club will miss out on Reece Oxford with the West Ham United youngster set to join Nottingham Forest on loan. Meanwhile, the Scottish Sun are reporting that potential Ibrox wonderkid Billy Gilmour could be tempted to join Arsenal this summer after being invited down to North London this past weekend. The 15-year-old will be able to sign his first professional contract this summer.
08.27: Billy Mckay could be set to return to Inverness CT as the Highland club look to make a late swoop for the striker. Mckay was clinical during his time in Inverness but has struggled for goals elsewhere and is currently on loan at Oldham from Wigan Athletic. If they are able to push through a deal, ICT will be hoping Mckay does more for their survival hopes than he did for Dundee United last term.
08.25: It looks set to be a nervy 24 hours for Celtic fans with Moussa Dembele, Kieran Tierney, Erik Sviatchenko and Craig Gordon all said to be subject of interest from English Premier League sides. Chelsea want Dembele and Gordon, with reports suggesting the Stamford Bridge outfit have offered an incredible £34million for the striker, while Sunderland are interested in Tierney and Leicester City have been linked with Sviatchenko. Celtic have so far resisted any attempt to lure their top talents away from the club. Meanwhile, the Scottish Sun are reporting that there is no truth to rumours Efe Ambrose will join Hibs, while the Evening News believe there’s little chance Kris Commons will return to Easter Road.