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  1. Rangers in crisis ââ?¬â?? Douglas Park has spoken to director Dave King, but admits takeover is ââ?¬Ë?impossibleââ?¬â?¢ because of tax investigation For sale ââ?¬â?? but whoââ?¬â?¢s buying? Darrell King Share 0 comments 28 Apr 2010 Douglas Park, the businessman who has interests in several car *franchises and a coach company, last night confirmed he has spoken with Dave King, the South Africa-based *millionaire Rangers director who remains interested in taking over the club. Park told The Herald there was a ââ?¬Å?real willingnessââ?¬Â from several individuals who want to help the Ibrox club out of their financial plight. However, with the revelation that an HM Revenue and Customs investi*gation is ongoing into payments Rangers made into playersââ?¬â?¢ offshore trusts over the past decade, Park conceded there would have to be certain conditions agreed with Rangersââ?¬â?¢ owners, Murray Inter*national, and the clubââ?¬â?¢s bankers, Lloyds, before any deal could be done. The SPL championsââ?¬â?¢ debts are still hovering around the Ã?£30m mark, and the HMRC investigation could lead to a tax bill ââ?¬â?? the exact amount yet unknown ââ?¬â?? having to be met if the club is found to have a case to answer. When asked if he had held discussions with King over a potential buy-out, Park would only say: ââ?¬Å?I have had meetings with Dave King since January, but the contents of our discussions are private. There are people out there with a real willingness to put millions of pounds of their own money into the club to try to address the current situation and return the club to stability. However, unless certain conditions are met, it would be impossible for anything to proceed. ââ?¬Å?At the moment, the bank are in total control of the situation as the season-ticket money, and any Champions League money, comes in.ââ?¬Â Rangers are anxious to discover as soon as possible the bankââ?¬â?¢s plans for the biggest revenue stream into the club, season-ticket monies that annually amount to between Ã?£18m and Ã?£20m, with sources telling The Herald there are fears this money will be used to attack the overall debt as the wait for a new owner goes on. Last night, Rangers were guaranteed automatic entry to the Cham*pions League group stages next season after Bayern Munich overcame Lyon 0-4 on aggregate in France. The German side, along with Barcelona and Inter Milan, who contest the second semi-final tonight, are all guaranteed to play in the 2010/11 group phase courtesy of their domestic league positions and, therefore, an automatic position has been freed up for the champions of Scotland. There are people out there with a real willingness to put millions of pounds of their own money into the club to try to address the current situation and return the club to stability. However, unless certain conditions are met, it would be impossible for anything to proceed. Douglas Park This will generate revenue of around Ã?£15m for Rangers and, again, answers are being sought from the bank as to what will happen to that money, and how much will be put into the business plan for the season ahead. Rangers issued a statement last night denying that Champions League income ââ?¬Å?had already been ring-fenced by the bank to reduce the clubââ?¬â?¢s debtââ?¬Â. However, when our sister paper the Evening Times broke the story yesterday, their suggestion was that senior sources at the club feared the Champions League and season ticket money would be used to address debts, not that it had already been agreed. The statement added: ââ?¬Å?Discussions with the bank in relation to the business plan will take place in the coming weeks. The club would also like to reiterate once again that at no time has director Dave King made an offer for the purchase of Rangers.ââ?¬Â Manager Walter Smith has expressed fears since last October over the future of the club, but he will say nothing else on the financial situation, or his own contractual situation, until being informed by the board of what the business plan is. Smith is almost certainly unwilling to commit to another season at the helm if the club is going to continue downsizing. At the moment, with six players out of contract, *Rangers are scheduled to return for pre-*season training in July with a squad of 14 first-team players plus two goalkeepers. Of that number, three are young players in Danny Wilson, John Fleck and Andrew Little, while another is Andrius Velicka who is unlikely to be match-fit for the start of the season after nine months on the sidelines with a knee injury. They could be open to predators in the transfer market for players such as Madjid Bougherra, Steven Davis and Allan McGregor, with no guarantees that any money from sales will be allowed to fund replacements. There has been no scouting network in place because of the financial cutbacks over the past six months; while the pre-season tour planned for America, including a money-spinning Old Firm match against Celtic scheduled for Boston on July 21, *cannot be confirmed until a management team is in place for next season.
  2. Copied this from FF 13 senior players in squad next year -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- And thats including Danny Wilson as one for next year. And it could get worse if we sell players. I think the vast majority will not be offered tangible contracts and Muir will welcome the reduction in wage. Even a couple of injuries would put us in the deep stuff. Smith needs to offer an ultimatium and leave with his head held high if Muir and the bank continue the ruthless march for MIH cash. Thats not even worst case senario, that would include Muir demanding capital through player sales as hinted by Smith. 1 GK Allan McGregor 25 GK Neil Alexander 16 DF Steven Whittaker 24 DF Madjid Bougherra 5 DF Sa�¡a Papac 66 DF Danny Wilson Andy Webster 2 MF Maurice Edu 6 MF Lee McCulloch 7 MF Steven Davis 8 MF Kevin Thomson 14 FW Steven Naismith 18 FW Kenny Miller 27 FW Kyle Lafferty 29 MF John Fleck 48 FW Andrew Little Velicka possible kids to join senior squad? 67 MF Jamie Ness 69 MF Gregg Wylde Tomas Kind bendiksen
  3. http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/sport/football/premteams/liverpool/2914407/Liverpool-line-up-3m-Danny-Wilson-bid.html I could have understood a bit before now but as his contract is up next summer, I'd have thought it made more sense for interested teams to allow the lad another year at Rangers to aid his development then sign him for nothing next January - rather than paying a lump sum now and him hardly playing. What is for certain, is that we need to secure a new contract for him asap.
  4. The wide positions have been a long-held problem at this club. We've tried allcomers on the left, with no one truly making the position their own. And CM Davis has been on the right pretty much all year, despite the fact he's better in the middle, a point both Ally and Walter are well aware of. We went on that terrific run in December of nigh-on cricket scores with Novo left, Beasley right, and McCulloch and Davis in their central positions. Injuries ended that run and since then we've been jiggling around with personnel, seeing Lafferty, Fleck, Naismith and Beasley all on the left rotated, with Davis back on the right. It seems to me, while we've been peerless this season, it could be better - and Davis continues to be played in this wide right position which sees him maybe at 70% of his capacity. What would be the matter with reverting back to the wide men of December and putting Davis back where he can do most damage? Everyone's fit and it worked once upon a time, so why not again? And hey, it might even get some form out of Boyd...
  5. DANNY set to follow Fleck and pen new deal More...
  6. TEEN talent agrees to stay with Gers until summer of 2013 More...
  7. Part One of the Treble has been completed and with a healthy lead in the SPL, Rangers travel to Dundee to retain their interest in the Scottish Cup. With injuries and suspensions again starting to build up, tomorrow evening's task won't be an easy one at a ground we regularly struggle at. First change to the team will be in defence with Allan McGregor a certainty to be recalled after his usual CIS holiday at the weekend. Despite his red card at Hampden, Danny Wilson should keep his place alongside captain Davie Weir, with Bougherra still out with a hamstring tear. Whittaker and Papac should complete our usual back five of late in the full-back roles although the former has been linked with a move into midfield. With Kirk Broadfoot also injured and Andy Little unimpressive at right back, that is unlikely. Injuries and suspension will also ensure a new look midfield for this vital cup tie. An injury time booking at Ibrox in the first game means he's suspended for the replay. Kevin Thomson is also suspended but if rumoured Rangers appeal his red card, he may be available while that process takes its course. Meanwhile, Steven Davis didn't train today but the manager and fans alike will be hoping he can make the starting line-up tomorrow. However, with difficult matches in the league coming up, he may be given a few more days to fully recover from the viral infection which seen him substituted at half-time at the Cup Final. Fortunately, despite our rapidly thinning squad, we still have a range of options for deputies. Maurice Edu has looked good in recent weeks so will assume a central midfield role irrespective of Davis' fitness. Other players in the frame will be Novo, Beasley, Naismith, Lafferty and Fleck who all have experience of a variety of midfield roles. Youngsters Jamie Ness and Thomas Kind Bendiksen are unlikely to be utilised although both have been training with the first team squad. Moving into attack and most bears will be expecting the fruitful partnership of Miller and Boyd to again be our front two. However, don't rule out a return to 4-5-1 tomorrow given Boyd's recent form has been below par while the likes of Naismith and Fleck play better in deeper roles. Kyle Lafferty will also be desperate for a return to a striking role if required. All in all, Walter Smith may decide to freshen up his squad and tactics after signs of stagnation in the last couple of months. However, with several first team players unavailable it is doubtful he'll make any more changes than already required even if the Scottish Cup may not hold the same significance as the League. The same character, commitment and industry seen on Sunday after going to 9 men will be required again tomorrow night if we're to keep our Treble hopes alive. Possible team (4-4-2): :sw: :wilson: :sp: :sn: :sd: :me: :nn: :kb: Prediction: Dundee Utd 1 : 2 Rangers
  8. Starting with Little and Fleck up front. Boyd, Miller and Novo on the bench. Not worrying about the Scottish Cup? - Why appeal the Thomson sending off if you want to concentrate on the league? Our players need a rest? - Since the start of January Boyd has missed at least 8 games and Miller 7 games. Novo has hardly been an automatic first choice. I can't see why all 3 need a rest, but are fit enough to be on the bench, and Little requires to be picked in front of all of them. Why not rest the 40 year old who has played every minute of every league game if you think our players need a rest? It does not make any sense to me and perhaps there were non-footballing reasons behind last night's team selection. Was this Walter sending a message that he thinks that the squad is not strong enough and he will not stay if that does not improve? Whatever the reasons, the team selection is baffling and we are left out of the cup, and I'm left down in a morning that I should be feeling other emotions. Angry and bemused loyal.
  9. STRONG reserve side cruise to 3-0 win over Falkirk A STRONG Rangers reserve side eased to a 3-0 win over Falkirk at Murray Park this afternoon. With ten first teamers in the starting eleven it was a comfortable victory for the Light Blues thanks to goals from Andy Little, John Fleck and Thomas Kind Bendiksen. Little got the home side off the mark after just seven minutes when he followed up on Steven Naismith's headed effort after a well worked corner involving Fleck and Nacho Novo. It was the only clear cut chance of the opening half but a second goal early in the second period signalled the start of a host of changes for Rangers. It was Fleck who added the second latching on to a neat through ball to volley home from the edge of the area with half an hour still left on the clock. That was the spark for a number of changes as Little, Steven Naismith, DaMarcus Beasley and Kirk Broadfoot all made way in quick succession for Kane Hemmings, Steph Stirling, Kyle Hutton and Gregg Wylde. It was another substitute though who added a little gloss to the scoreline with Norwegian Bendiksen slotting home an excellent third with just three minutes remaining. Rangers: Alexander; Broadfoot, Kinniburgh, Wilson, Smith; Beasley, Edu, Fleck, Little; Novo, Naismith. Subs: Gallacher, Hemmings, Kind-Bendiksen, Stirling, Campbell, Hutton, McCabe, Wylde. More...
  10. http://www.rangers.co.uk/articles/20...254024_1967825 Heres a run down of how each Rangers player performed. This isn't by me, it's from Laudrup1 on FF. Alexander did what we all know he can do. Was steady and reliable, caught a couple of crosses well and took two corners out of the air too. Didn't have any chance with the second which was a close range tap in. The first...now don't get me wrong, it was a cracking shot high into the net and close to the top corner...however he 'nearly thought' about moving for it. I think this is the slight difference between him and McGregor (and the reason that Smith took the option he did this summer over the no.1) I've seen it a couple of times with him. It's very hard to criticise but I sometimes think to myself "McGregor would have gone for that / actually got it" Certainly, if we're selling folk and McGregor is one to go, we're not gubbed if he has to stand in as we all knew anyway. There's not a gulf between them there like we've had between any other no.1s and their deputies (think more Klos / Waatereus than Goram / Maxwell) The two full backs. Cole's very much in the Stevie Whittaker mould of full backs. His tackling from time to time is suspect but he's good at getting forward (doesn't chip in with many goals all the same) and has looked decent for a couple of seasons now. He played reasonably well as usual but alot of the Killie play went down our left hand side. Kinniburgh is just back from an injury after a succesful loan spell at Oxford. If he hadn't been injured towards the end of that loan, he'd likely have gone on loan again after Christmas. From the first u19s double winning team, he's in the same boat as a number of others. I see him as a very capable player but like McMillan, Shinnie and Gallagher, given they're all 20-22 years old now, they're time may have passsed. I could well see Kinni being moved on in the summer with Wylde having appeared in the first team ahead of him already. The two centre halfs are promising. There's been alot of talk about Witkorski in the last wee while as folk become more aware of him. Both him and Chris Scott are doing well in the 19s and, considering they were up against guys like Sammon and Fernandez yesterday, didn't make too many errors at all. The second goal could well have been defended better all the same. They're maybe not "classy" in the Danny Wilson sense of the game but do have more presence. Nothing to suggest they won't progress further as they continue. Both are still available at 19s past this season too. Stirling, for me, is a cracking player. He's got a bit of a swagger about him in the middle of the pitch. Quite slight but will dictate play in games. Not comparing him to Gazza at all but he'll go past players in a similar manner by harldy moving the ball or his body. Again, like Wylde, I can see him being retained while the likes of Shinnie move on. They're maybe not any better as players (give or take) but being a couple of years younger, have that on their side. He showed his usual performance yesterday with a couple of great balls through to Little and small individual pieces of play that light the game up from time to time. Was good to see Bendiksen back. He was struggling with the pace in the initial stages as you'd expect of someone out for the best part of 18 months. Before his injury I was saying he reminded me or Reyna (and having seen more of Davis now, him too) in the sense that he can play on the right or in the middle and does alot of work while contributing with forward runs. I'd be surprised to see him leave without him getting another year of a chance given the problems he's had. Given that we paid �£100k for him too, I'd imagine he's expected to make something of it. He'll need time to get back into it though. Jamie Ness only played the first half before being replaced by Hutton. He's more of a Thomson type player. A left sided defensive midfielder. Big noises were made about him as Wilson and Fleck were also touted for the first team. McCulloch and Edu plus Thomson all being there in that role for the first team may mean he's going to have to wait a bit longer but he's got a great chance based on his career so far. Did have a poorer game yesterday than he can though. Beasley was just his usual self. Got hoofed in the air a good few times from late and poor tackles. Other times he was just bounced off the ball. Did make a great run for his goal though and took it well. I hate hearing folk go on about him being too lightweight. He's got a tonne of caps for America and played in a CL semi with Eindhoven against Milan which they only lost in the last minute? Are folk telling me that being up against Maldini wasn't as challenging as anything the Hamilton left back can do in the SPL? He is light but while the SPL is a rough league, it doesn't mean someone of his stature shouldn't be able to handle it. He's shown on a few occasions he can do it but we need to play to his strentgths and not expect him to be making tackles like John Brown. Some of our fans just can't accept a player who's not a "traditional Ranger" and always want to criticise. I think along with his lacking stature being blamed for his injuries, he's actually had a bad run of it with us. I hope he can show more of what he did at Tannadice earlier in the season. There's signs he can be a player for us but will never be a Laudrup. Little impressed me most of all yesterday. The Reserve Team Loyal have all long been of the opinion that Rory Loy scores more goals, seems to be quicker and shows more skillful turns to beat players than Little does. For what ever reason though, Little's ahead of him in the managements plans. Yesterday he played as well as I've seen from either of the two of them in a while. He was beating mean in the box to create space for a couple of shots and also held the ball up well regularly (getting the assist for the goal in that manner too) He's not a spectacular player in the sense that he won't do what Fleck does at this level from time to time and score a screamer but has attributes which mean, as he's shown, he will be capable in the first team. For me, he was our MOTM yesterday.
  11. The morning after the night before then and am I the only one who feels somewhat hungover despite not even having the benefit of a few beers? As always, like most football fans, the excitement of the last day of the transfer window means alcohol isn't even needed to feel inebriated as the rumours, counter rumours and subsequent arguments rage. Who needs a pub when you have hundreds of people on a forum arguing the toss about who is coming and who isn't while Sky Sports News conducts this bizarre symphony? Then finally, when the window creaks shut and the realisation your greatest rivals have strengthened while we've signed no-one the online equivalent of a hangover kicks in. So, do we reach for the tonic of a positive spin on the situation or, as is often easier, do we take our minds of the bad feeling by feeling sorry for ourselves? Is your glass half-full or half-empty? Allow me to help you decide! First off, let's look at the downside of the last few days. Celtic now have a better team than before January. There, I've said it and anyone who suggests otherwise is simply being churlish while hiding from the truth of the matter. Any team who buys seven new first team players to replace seven players who were hardly setting the heather alight in Scotland, is likely to improve. Add in the fact these players are internationalists and a few of them respected professionals from leagues betters than the SPL, then I wouldn't blame any Rangers supporter for being somewhat worried. The addition of Robbie Keane is also fascinating and while his recent form in England has hardly been worthy of his inflated fee/wage; his overall playing and goalscoring threat means Celtic will be confident of scoring the goals to win any match. To sum up, these signings will reinvigorate the fans and players at Parkhead so the likelihood of Celtic dropping as many points in the closing stages of the season as they did in the first half, is low. As such, their chances of winning the league have increased - to deny this would be foolhardy. Conversely, we've lost a key player, have allowed several fringe players to leave on loan and our squad has not improved as a result. Therefore, it would be easy for our fans and players to lose confidence and question their own chances of success. Undoubtedly, we're now going to enter a crucial period of the season and the mental games of the last few days way well influence the physical battles ahead. All the more reason then to look at the positives. Firstly, we still have the same core of players who have given us a seven point cushion (in real terms). The loss of Pedro Mendes and Jerome Rothen is disappointing from a creative point of view but neither player contributed all that much to this season so far. Their injury and poor form meant other players stepped up and developed the lead we have at the top of the SPL. Indeed, despite injuries and constant changes of personnel in January, that lead was extended so our current squad has shown it is good enough and deep enough to cope with the very worst that luck and circumstance can throw at us. It is extremely unlikely we'll lose as many key players over the rest of the season as we did over the last 4-6 weeks. In that regard, it is important to outline that the advantage of having such a settled team of players who know each others styles should not be under-estimated. Not losing our key players such as McGregor, Bougherra, Davis, Miller and Boyd shouldn't be something to celebrate per se but it is a positive worth highlighting. These players will be as crucial as any at Celtic and all five are just as good (or better) then their immediate opponent in green. The same goes for the rest of our squad - all of whom have now been over the course of a championship battle before. Can we say the same about Celtic? Another reason to be constructive is that our financial situation is improving while Celtic are certainly taking a gamble on their own future. We've managed to remove the burden of the wages of two of our highest paid players and bring in a decent fee which should decrease our debt further and allow some flexibility for those nearing the end of their contracts. The situation of Kris Boyd is somewhat different to that of Nacho Novo, Kirk Broadfoot, John Fleck and Danny Wilson but all five players can now surely be dealt with suitably to ensure we continue the settled theme into next season and beyond. Meanwhile, Celtic - who did have a healthy balance sheet - have now spent millions of pounds to risk their financial future on winning the SPL. Sure, they've improved their chances, but those of their fans suggesting the title is now theirs because of a few signings mid-way through a season are being premature. Certainly if they don't catch Rangers and win the title the loan players that arrived yesterday will find their stay in Glasgow a short one. And they won't be replaced next season. Add in two seasons without the Champions' League Group Tage pot of gold, then they only rainbow they'll see is a red, white and blue one as the rain falls on their parade. Of course, we're now looking into a future none of us know the content of. To that end, some say fate can't be avoided and that may be true. I say different though as we can all influence our own future. Yesterday, saw Celtic attempt to instigate a positive change on theirs and I doubt anyone will argue that their chances of success have improved. Unfortunately, our club didn't do the same so it is difficult to disagree when some suggest our chances have weakened. However, I do disagree. We are still in front and we still have a fine group of players capable of delivering the championship to Ibrox for the 53rd time. For that reason, don't let the negatives dictate your thoughts over the coming days, weeks and months. Yes, be frustrated but channel that frustration in a positive manner by supporting the players and management team as we always do - loyally, in good voice and welcoming the chase. I'd like to raise a glass then - a half-full one - to the 53rd! Aye! :spl:
  12. Saw this elsewhere: Could prove important when the chips are down.
  13. http://www.tribalfootball.com/fleck-cites-misunderstanding-rangers-contract-talks-resume-601031
  14. Andrew Little has urged his Rangers team-mates John Fleck and Danny Wilson to sign new contracts. More...
  15. rbr

    John Fleck

    After the thread on this promising young player a few weeks ago , does anyone think that after playing in his best position , just behind the striker ,that they might have jumped the gun a bit . I certainly thought he had blown it after getting continually overlooked but yesterday I thought he was really composed , rarely wasted a ball and was very unlucky on a few occasions , thoughts !!
  16. BROADFOOT still in talks but hopes his future lies at Ibrox More...
  17. http://www.sundaypost.com/postindex.htm By Danny Stewart DANNY WILSON and John Fleck have been left stunned by suggestions they have set their sights on England. Rangersââ?¬â?¢ teenage stars, who still have 18 months to run on their contracts, have been unable to agree on new deals. Repeated attempts by Chief Executive Martin Bain to broker pay packages have stalled. And on Friday manager Walter Smith said it appeared the pair saw their futures elsewhere and were putting contracts ahead of their careers. That has shocked Wilson and Fleck, both of whom have been Rangers supporters since boyhood. Baulked Wilson has baulked at accepting a new four-year deal. It is understood that was in response to an offer heavily weighted towards appearances. And while there is interest in the young central defender from Manchester United and Spurs, his desire is to stay at Ibrox, albeit on his terms. Fleck is like-minded. Mainly used off the substitutesââ?¬â?¢ bench this season, he helped set up Nacho Novoââ?¬â?¢s winner at Hamilton yesterday. His only wish is to do so with Rangers. In any case, there are no clubs currently queuing up to try and lure him south. The playersââ?¬â?¢ advisors, the Stellar Group, were last night tight-lipped on the situation. All a spokesman would say was, ââ?¬Å?Our clients are fully committed to Rangers Football Club.ââ?¬Â great news give them a 5 year contract worth 5 grand a week and if they keep playing better give them a pay rise bain :spl:
  18. Great strike from John Fleck to set Novo up for the rebound. Well taken by wee Nacho as well. http://www.101greatgoals.com/videodisplay/4481116/
  19. With the enforced absences of a number of key first picks; most notably Miller, Boyd, Bougherra and Mendes, it is time for some of Rangers less lauded players to make a telling contribution. Consistent performers like captain Davie Weir and Sasa Papac have helped Danny Wilson ease his way into the first team. When the more experienced players around you are performing well and talking you through games, it is easier for younger or more inexperienced players to make the transition into senior football. The occasional blip aside, this has been evidenced by the domestic form of the defence. Unfortunately as we progress further up the field the players in midfield and attack are not softening the blow when first choice players are unavailable through injury or suspension. Steven Davis when played in his favoured central midfield role has commanded a place in midfield. Yet even in spite of crippling injuries and suspensions no other squad member is demanding a starting berth in midfield or attack. With the vast number of unavailable players not be ably replaced by the support cast, it is inevitable that the more experienced players and more expensive imports who are bearing the brunt of the fans frustration. Sure, we are sitting handsomely at the top of the SPL, but performances since an exemplary December delivered by the weakened squad have been less than encouraging. With the mud flying from out with and within the Rangers support it is inevitable that this article would lead to the main offender in most individuals eyes; Kyle Lafferty. The lanky forward is perhaps another signing unfortunate to suffer from an inflated transfer fee which he himself did not choose. �£4million is hardly an earth shattering sum in world football, but that does not take into account that Rangers have not made a signing (aside from Jerome Rothenâ��s ill-fated loan) for 18 months and 3 transfer windows. It is also a far greater some than many of the star performers in the current squad; Miller (�£2mil), Bougherra (�£2.5mil) and Davis (�£3mil). I will avoid the obvious comparison with the SPLâ��s greatest marksman as the financial markets were wildly different when Kris Boyd came to Rangers with only a short period remaining on his Kilmarnock contract. New Scotland manager Craig Levein will be delighted by the form of Scotlandâ��s most devastating strike pair. Whilst Miller (12 goals) sits in second in the goal scoring charts behind the prolific Boyd (19 goals), Kris (4 assists) is chasing hard behind Miller (6), McGeady (8) and Davis (9) as he has added a greater team ethic to his peerless goal scoring ability. With Boyd recovering from hernia surgery and Miller serving a ban, it is an unenviable task that awaits their replacements. The impact of the reduced squad size at Ibrox will be no more keenly felt than this January. Lafferty, Novo and Fleck are the only fit strikers in the first team squad with utility player Andrew Little a potential pick for the upcoming fixtures. The two young Scots and the effervescent Spaniard will also be competing for the wide positions in midfield. Kyle Lafferty meanwhile is an almost certain starter upfront as the forward himself and his manager seeks to justify his price tag. Lafferty has never been a prolific striker. Single-handed he will not replace the goals of Boyd nor the work rate of Miller. However, he has other attributes which he must learn to utilise more often. There have been signs of promise in his time at Rangers. He has on occasion shown a composure in finishing that comes closer to Boyd than any of our other forwards. His performance in the title winning victory at Tannadice at the end of last season was one of his best in light blue. Lafferty himself as recognised that perhaps his own attitude has held back his Rangers career. He acknowledges that in signing for Rangers it went to his head a little and he thought he had made it. I will not chastise a 22-year old footballer for a bit of immaturity. I am a few years older than the Ulsterman and have been prone to the occasional bout of childish behaviour too. Footballers often lead sheltered lives where they are mollycoddled and do not mature quite as they should. Though, moving to the goldfish bowl of Glasgow soon wakes the players up to the dirty tricks of our media Rumours were confirmed by Lafferty that his captain had to give him a wakeup call after a disappointing performance up at Pittodrie. Arguments between team mates are not unusual in football in the highly charged, testosterone filled dressing rooms of competitive sports men. We can only hope that Lafferty truly has paid heed to his captainâ��s stinging words. Unfortunately I do not see a �£4million pound player in Kyle Lafferty. Nor a player that many regularly contend can flourish at a level not recently achieved by more celebrated Rangers forwards. I do however believe he is a better player than he has shown recently. His staunchest defence is that he has not been played in his favoured position. Miller and Boyd have been the first names down on the team sheet in recent months. With both unavailable and a run in the team in his preferred position open to Lafferty it is time for him to stand up and be counted!
  20. Fleck and Wilson allegedly reject offers of new contracts. http://www.newsnow.co.uk/A/394842070?-11344
  21. WALTER Smith has warned of dire consequences for Rangers if they do not resist selling any players during the current transfer window and also retain the bulk of their squad whose contracts are due to expire in the summer. The frustration Smith has experienced for the last 18 months as the Ibrox club grapple with their financial problems resurfaced yesterday as he responded to speculation linking Pedro Mendes with a move to Sporting Lisbon. Rangers, who have not been able to buy a new player since August 2008, remain under pressure from the Lloyds Banking Group to restructure their finances and reduce their �£31 million debt. But manager Smith is adamant Rangers cannot afford any further cuts to the first-team squad for the second half of a season which currently sees them seven points clear of Celtic at the top of the SPL and still involved in both domestic cup competitions. While top scorer Kris Boyd has now been offered a new contract, Smith is keen to see the future of other players tied up. Among those whose existing deals also run out at the end of the season are Kirk Broadfoot, Nacho Novo, DaMarcus Beasley and Stevie Smith. "If we don't start to offer some of them the opportunity to stay with the club, then we will cease to operate, never mind anything else," said Smith. "We have been in negotiations with a few others as well as Kris. We have started talking to Kirk Broadfoot and Nacho Novo. It is something that has to happen." With his resources further limited by injuries and unavailability, Smith was forced to fill out his substitutes' bench with four youngsters in Andrew Little, John Fleck, Gregg Wylde and Jamie Ness. He regards it as a clear indication of why Rangers should not be looking to offload senior players such as Mendes. "Who says we are going to get rid of Pedro?" added Smith. "I've not heard anything about getting rid of Pedro, apart from what I read in newspapers. Last week, we only had two senior professionals in Maurice Edu and Stevie Smith on the bench at Celtic Park. We will only have a couple available to us again this weekend. With suspensions set to kick in for the second half of the season, we will need all of our players between now and the end of the season." Smith is still waiting to learn if Boyd will accept the club's offer of a new three-year contract reported to be worth around �£18,000 a week. "His agent spoke with (chief executive) Martin Bain yesterday and he has gone off to think over the offer being made," said Smith. "We've still not heard anything back." One player Smith would be prepared to lose is French winger Jerome Rothen, 31, who has failed to make the desired impact during his season-long loan from Paris St Germain. He is no longer in the manager's first team plans and hopes to return home this month. Rangers begin their defence of the Active Nation Scottish Cup tomorrow and Smith is able to welcome Kenny Miller and Kevin Thomson back from suspension and injury respectively for the lunchtime kick-off against Hamilton Accies at New Douglas Park. http://sport.scotsman.com/sport/Walter-Smith--warns-.5968866.jp
  22. when novo got injured yesterday fleck should have been the obvious replcement. But Smith opted for someone in another position. Smith obviously has no faith in the lad. It was the proper position for him to play but never gave him the chance. I said at the time when fleck came through to the first team that he would dissapear into obscurity and im being proven correct. He will never get a run in the team (or a game for that matter) in his proper position (just like lafferty) and the sooner he realises this the better. get out son while you still have a chance of a decent career. you wont do it under smith.
  23. I've lifted this from RM because it's an honest summary after today's defeat in Aberdeen by a Bear who attended & it sums up a lot of what I'm thinking myself:- Beaten by a make-shift Mark McGhee side – our embarrassing away form continues Written by Muff "Only 4 goals scored away from home in the league this season - a truely shocking stat! Doesn’t help when Walter Smith has a tactical nightmare once again, the players fail to turn up, and cannot hit a barn door. So today, the manager started with Kevin Thomson, Kenny Miller and Madjid Bougherra on the bench . Steven Whittaker, David Weir, Kyle Lafferty and Lee McCulloch kept their place. In midfield, not one player was in their proper position, and Kyle Lafferty partnered Kris Boyd. We are told by the manager that David Weir would not be able to play three games in a week, yet he starts today, with Madjid Bougherra on the bench? Steven Whittaker continues to get a game, whilst Madjid Bougherra is on the bench, along with Andrew Little (who the manager think’s can play right back), and Jordan McMillan is nowhere to be seen – 17 minutes gone, and once again Whittaker fails to close down, and we are 1-0 down. It happens EVERY WEEK! Why does he continue to get a game, whilst better players are left out? Lee McCulloch kept his place in the team, whilst Kevin Thomson sat on the bench? Both had terrible games against Stuttgart, but the two previous matches – St. Mirren and Kilmarnock, Thomson was the better of the two, and played not too bad. Lee McCulloch had a complete and utter nightmare today, and was eventually hooked – yet will still start the next game. Our central midfield pairing was Lee McCulloch and Steven Naismith – what fucking idiot came up with that one? The both of them are simply not good enough. They got in each others way, failed to look for the ball, gave away fouls – well McCulloch did, because Naismith was too scared to put the boot in....they hid – bunch of fucking fairies. Steven Davis failed to show up, he was absolutely hopeless, and his inconsistacy is a major problem. Did he complete a pass today? John Fleck, who impressed in a central role the other week was shunted out onto the left, where he is completely wasted, and one of the worst partnerships in Scotland, was tried out once again, and completely failed. Kris Boyd and Kenny Miller had been linking up well in the league, yet Miller found himself on the bench? Kyle Lafferty would be better in a circus, because he certainly aint a football player. The least said about him, McCulloch and Naismith, the better. Kenny Miller did well when he came on, the typical Nacho Novo substitution was a joke, and Kris Boyd and Danny Wilson played well, Boyd especially, but he has to take his chances in these so-called bigger games. For the first 35 minutes of the 1st half, we were terrible. Second best, couldn’t win a tackle, couldn’t hold on to possession, and couldn’t find one of our own players. Our set pieces and delivery are a complete and utter disgrace, and clearly not worked on. It took us the best part of 35 minutes to get going, which is unacceptable. A side with no pace, balance, width, creativity....too many players lacking the very basics, too many schoolboy errors! Absolutely no drive, passion, commitment, ability, leaderhip or fight. Better 2nd half, and there was only one team on the park, but that doesn’t matter when you fail to take your chances. Yet again, that bead rhattling bastard, Craig Thomson fails to give Rangers a penalty, yes he should be slated for it, but we had more than enough chances to put them away. Today we had enough chances to win 2 games, and we didn’t take any of them. Anyone blaming Kyle Lafferty obviously doesn’t have a clue, or has not played football! Kris Boyd went for goal, he got it horribly wrong, and the ball came to Lafferty at about 100mph, whilst on the rise. Even Edin Dzeko would have struggled to convert that! Kris Boyd made some good chances for himself, and didn’t take them, the one in the 2nd half especially. Lee McCulloch had a good opportunity but failed to get it on target, Kenny Miller had a few snap shots, and missed the target, and both Boyd, and Papac missed chances at the end. Our pathetic run at Pittodrie under Walter Smith continues, our players continually fail to repay both the management and fans, and the management team had yet another howler – tactically inept, a dinosaur, and his two puppets, who don’t have a clue! An all round poor performance from everyone, and they are dragging us down even further. Another chance to put the pressure on one of the worst celtc sides EVER, and yet again we fail. I hope the players enjoy tonight, because I certainly won’t, not that they give a shit."
  24. I ask the question because it is now clear that the Unirea result was not some kind of freak result, but rather what we should have expected. I've been thinking about who is expendable and who we need to keep hold of for the time being. By 'good enough' I mean at the Euro level, not the woeful SPL standard. Being ruthless I can only say the following are indispensable: McGregor, Wilson, Papac, Davis, Mendes, Boyd and Fleck. So - we need a right back, a centre half to replace Weir and two wide midfielders. Everybody else in the squad is just not up to standard. IMO only those 7 are good enough to from the core of our team. It gives me no pleasure to write off Thomson and Lafferty for instance, but what is needed now is a cool, hard look. I have not even mentioned who would fetch a good transfer fee, because for me that is another matter entirely. I am just talking about what we should do with a clean slate.
  25. http://www.gersnetonline.co.uk/2010/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=144:rangers-2-1-st-mirren-player-ratings-and-mom-poll&catid=35:analysis&Itemid=67 Man of the Match - :jf:
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