Mark Warburton remains committed to his belief Rangers can still challenge credibly at the top of the Premiership in their first season back in the top flight.
Warburton watched on from the sidelines as his side lost to rivals Celtic for the second time this campaign, going down 1-0 in the Betfred Cup semi-final.
They have dropped 12 points in their first nine league fixtures, leaving them in fifth place in the table ahead of tomorrow night’s meeting with fourth-placed St Johnstone at Ibrox.
The Rangers boss insists he never explicitly said his side would challenge Celtic for the title and believes his squad are still on for a strong finish this campaign.
“I am never going to change,” said Warburton. “I said to you right at the start that we were going into the league to be highly competitive.
“It would be reckless to say ‘We’re going to win it.’ You say that, and anything less than first is a failure.
“If I say we’re going to finish third, well what about second and first? So you have to be very careful how you answer that question.
“I’ve said from day one, and I’ve never deviated, that we have to be highly competitive. We’ve introduced a number of new players. For the past few weeks, we’ve seen improvement, had a good run.
“At Aberdeen, we didn’t get the result our performance deserved – and we’re currently just three points behind them, the second placed team.
‘So that’s where we are – after an apparently shocking start, as many have said. We are getting there. We will be highly competitive. And judge us in May.”
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