Rangers: Steven Smith permanent return possibility

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THE return of Steven Smith to the Rangers training ground at the tail end of last season could lead to a permanent return to Ibrox for the defender.

First team coach Ian Durrant confirmed yesterday that Smith was very much in the thinking of Rangers’ manager Ally McCoist. “He has been talked about but that will be down to the manager,” said Durrant, who was a coach at Ibrox when Smith had his first spell at the club.

Smith left in 2010 to join Norwich City and has since had spells at Aberdeen (on loan), Preston North End and Portland Timbers in America.

Speaking before yesterday’s Tommy Burns Memorial Golf Day at Dundonald Links, Durrant said: “I have just come back from Hong Kong yesterday so I haven’t heard anything. He came in and trained in the last month of the season and he was great about the place, as he knows what it’s all about to play for Rangers. If we have a chance of getting him it would be a great addition.”

Meanwhile, former Rangers captain Barry Ferguson is to extend his stay at Blackpool.

Ferguson, 35, is out of contract this summer but has agreed a new one-year contract and will put pen to paper on the new deal next week.

Ferguson, who joined Blackpool in the summer of 2011 from Birmingham City in a £750,000 deal, had looked to be heading for the exit at Bloomfield Road earlier in the season when Ian Holloway was in charge. He loaned him to League Two Fleetwood Town but new Blackpool boss Paul Ince then made Ferguson a key man in his plans. Ferguson missed just one of the last 13 games and that was through suspension.

Another former Rangers player, Sone Aluko is confident he will cut it in the Premier League with Hull next season.

Aluko, who quit newco Rangers last summer, said: “I can’t wait, I honestly can’t wait. They should fear me because I watched them far more than they’ve watched me! Hopefully, that will give me the advantage. Not just myself but I hope the whole team can take a few people by surprise.”