Ally McCoist is confident of ‘four or five’ new signings for Rangers
RANGERS manager Ally McCoist remains on course to make several more signings before the club’s one-year transfer embargo kicks in at the end of the month.
McCoist made his sixth capture since the Ibrox club secured an SFA licence when he brought in former France Under-20 international Sebastien Faure on Tuesday.
McCoist, whose team continue their Irn-Bru Third Division campaign at Berwick tomorrow, said: “We’re hopeful we can get four or five over the line before the window closes. There are no signings imminent but certainly the wheels are in motion on three or four targets.”
Faure came in just as Dorin Goian left in a loan move to Serie B side Spezia but McCoist is hopeful only Maurice Edu will depart before next Friday, with USA captain Carlos Bocanegra still at Ibrox.
“I’m led to believe the Maurice Edu transfer to Stoke is still ongoing,” he said. “If and when that happens he will go with our best wishes, but I don’t think there has been anything concrete done with that at the moment.
“I’ve spoken to Carlos and, albeit he is struggling a wee bit at the moment with a hamstring injury, hopefully he can play on Sunday. He and I speak at great length, him being the captain and we’re delighted to have him here.”
Rangers have been linked with Birmingham midfielder Morgaro Gomis, formerly of Dundee United, and Malmo striker Daniel Larsson, but McCoist was unwilling to discuss players at other clubs. On Gomis, he said: “We haven’t had any dealings with the club. He’s a player we like but it would be unfair of me to speak about individuals.”
McCoist has been able to bring in internationals such as Dean Shiels and Ian Black this summer and he says he has not encountered too much difficulty in selling the club to potential targets. “It’s probably a lot easier than you would think,” he said.
“I’d argue the only downside, or certainly the biggest, is you’re not playing at the top level. I wouldn’t imagine many clubs can provide 50,000 fans for an SFL3 game, a wonderful atmosphere, a training facility to compete with anything in Europe. It’s still the same football club, the same environment. Players want to play at the top level but up till now we’ve been fortunate in the signings we’ve made because a lot of them have been SPL players, and not only that, but very good ones.”
McCoist is still mulling over offers for trialists such as Australian Francesco Stella, Greek defender Anestis Argiriou and Argentinian midfielder Francesco Celeste. “We are still monitoring them and they will be here for another three or four days, most of them, and there are possibly one or two coming in over the weekend,” he said.
Midfielder Black, meanwhile, is relieved to have won over the Rangers support following his summer move from Hearts.
The 27-year-old joined the Ibrox club despite being a figure of hate for Rangers fans after an infamous challenge on Nikica Jelavic two seasons ago kept the Croatian striker out for nearly four months.
But the combative player has already become a popular figure, partly because he was booed on his Scotland debut, and he will continue attempts to get the Ibrox crowd on his side, even if others do not change their opinion. He said: “I was coming here a bit worried but I knew if I went out and did the job, I could win them over. I must be doing something right for them to be singing a couple of songs about me.
“People like to tar you with a brush but it doesn’t faze me. If they want to come and kick me, then I’m just going to get up and get on with it. If we win the game, it’s one over on them.”
Black expects another difficult Third Division clash when Rangers travel across the Border to Berwick tomorrow. He said: “It’s exactly like I expected. I knew it was going to be tough.”
Berwick midfielder Lee Currie will finally get his chance to face Rangers tomorrow, having dreamed of taking on the Old Firm as a Hibs youngster. Currie, 22, is determined Ian Little’s side can prove they can hold their own against a team that is an SPL line-up in all but name.
He said: “Everyone is really looking forward to it. They’ve got a few good midfielders, like Ian Black and Dean Shiels, so personally it will be good for me to test myself up against these kinds of players.
“I never got the chance to play for Hibs at first-team level, which was disappointing, but I was in the squad against Rangers without getting out onto the pitch. It will be brilliant, even if it is a little bit strange, to finally come up against them in the Third Division and we just all want to put on a good performance and see what happens.”
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