CELTIC striker Leigh Griffiths could return to the first team in time for his side’s Scottish Cup final against Hearts next month, according to manager Neil Lennon. Lennon said: “What have we got, six weeks? Yeah. It’s realistic for him. He’s working away in the background and doing his double sessions.”

And in the aftermath of Sunday’s Scottish Cup semi-final against Aberdeen at the weekend, Celtic have released a statement condemning the bigoted chants aimed at Derek McInnes from their supporters - but have demanded the Scottish FA come down hard on abuse targeted at their own fans. “We hope the authorities also take the same interest in offensive chanting directed at Celtic Football Club and our supporters at yesterday’s (Sunday) match and other games,” the statement read.

Former Rangers striker Kris Boyd has told SFA bosses to “justify their wages” and deal with the resurgence of sectarian abuse in Scottish football. “The SFA have nowhere to hide on this one,” said Boyd. “The PFA have nowhere to hide on this one. They would all have been at the game and heard it with their own ears.”

Frank McAvennie reckons Celtic will splash the cash this summer as they move a step closer to completing an unprecedented ten league titles in a row. The ex-Celtic striker said: “They might not spent £10m or £15m on a player but they will find a few gems. Edouard has been a snip at £8m and that’s the kind of quality Lenny – or whoever is in charge – will be looking for.”

Rangers chairman Dave King believes Rangers are within ‘tangible reach’ of becoming a dominant domestic force in Scottish football once again. In a letter addressed to the club’s supporters, King wrote: “It was never going to be easy and it is extremely gratifying to have witnessed the progress that has been made over the last year. We are now within tangible reach of Rangers becoming the dominant force in Scottish football again.”

Rangers legend Ally McCoist is convinced that King will put his money where his mouth is and back Steven Gerrard significantly during the upcoming transfer window. McCoist said: “If I was him [Gerrard] I would be agreeing with him and saying ‘That’s good, now let’s go and make sure it happens’ but he needs backing and I genuinely think he will be backed.”

Ex-Celtic striker John Hartson reckons that this season’s Player of the Year award will go to either James Forrest or Callum McGregor, and believes that Forrest has become the ‘driving force’ in the Celtic team.

Hartson has also insisted that all hell would have broken loose on Sunday had Celtic behaved in the same manner as their opponents Aberdeen.

And the Welshman believes that Neil Lennon has began stamping his own authority on the Celtic team.

Elsewhere, ex-Rangers midfielder Barry Ferguson has told the Scottish Sun that his nephew Lewis’ red card against Celtic on Sunday was indefensible.

And the Daily Record are reporting that Aberdeen and Hibernian are stepping up their efforts to scout Portugal and Greece ahead of this summer’s transfer window.