Life after Warbs: Rangers next manager
We size up the early runners for the job
It was another dramatic weekend in Govan as news broke of Mark Warburton’s resignation as Rangers manager. One small problem – it was the first the Englishman had heard about it.
With fans at a loss to work out just what was going on at Ibrox, some thought perhaps the Rangers website and Twitter feed had been hacked and it was all a cruel practical joke. The truth was much stranger than anyone could have imagined.
As we understand it (get comfy) – Warburton, unhappy at having his signing policy called into question by Dave King and the Rangers board during a January meeting, put the wheels in motion to jump ship for a return to England under the cover of darkness. With the vacant Nottingham Forest job apparently promised to him, Warbs instructed his agent to hammer out a deal with the board to release him, assistant Davie Weir and Frank McParland from their contracts, cancelling any compensation due.
Rangers agreed, and then, like something out of a cheap movie, it is believed Forest changed their minds at the last minute, instead giving the job to interim boss Gary Brazil, leaving Warburton and his merry men high and dry. Like returning heroes, the trio promised to work on at Rangers until something better came along. Strangely enough, that didn’t sit well with the board and they voted to honour the initial decision and accept their resignations. Wow!
Never go back in football, right?
So, who is the man to take Rangers forward, build on the progress that has been made under Warburton and take it to the next level? Phase one for any newbie would be to finish second behind runaway leaders Celtic and return European football to the club. Money man Dave King then promised a fresh injection of cash for phase two.
Alex McLeish was part of the media team covering Rangers weekend Scottish Cup win over Morton, and he is widely-expected to take the hot-seat. The 58-year-old no-nonsense Glaswegian is, of course, a former Rangers manager, with great success, before going on to boss at the likes of Birmingham, Aston Villa, Nottingham Forest and Scotland. A host of famous names attached to Rangers consider him the best choice.
De Boer a fans favourite
Derek McInnis is a name often attached to Rangers as the former Bear is now pulling the strings at Aberdeen, and impressing too. A move back to Ibrox would certainly be a step up in his career, leaving The Gers’ main contenders for second weaker in the process, but it remains to be seen if he would fancy the challenge after years of effort building up The Dons.
Lastly, one for the romantics out there, and another former player in Frank de Boer apparently told the press that he has not been approached about the job, but would listen if he was. The fans still love him in the blue side of Glasgow, he would be a name that could compete with Brendan Rodgers, and has some fantastic contacts in the game. Taking the Gers job would be a good match too, Rangers are rebuilding, as is De Boer following a spell at Inter.