RANGERS boss Ally McCoist says former teammate Paul Gascoigne faces the toughest battle of his career as he tries to overcome alcoholism.
Gascoigne has been admitted to an American rehab clinic, and McCoist admits that he is fearful for the former England international.
McCoist told Rangers’ official website: “It really does sadden me and it equally worries me.
“He’s a smashing lad and everyone loved him during his team at Rangers and we obviously all wish him all the very best in his battle.
“It is a long hard battle against the problems and the demons that he faces but he has got support now from people who care about him.”
Gascoigne, 45, has seen an outpouring of support after news of his condition emerged last week.
DJ Chris Evans, former teammate Gary Lineker and Britain’s Got Talent judge Piers Morgan have pledged to pay his rehabilitiation bills.
McCoist described Gascoigne as one of the best players ever to play at Ibrox.
He said: “He was something else, what a player he was. In that period in the club’s history we had Gascoigne and (Brian) Laudrup who in many people’s eyes were two of the most talented players ever to play with the club.
“I was fortunate enough to play with them and they were two of the best.”