Rangers boss Steven Gerrard seeks cash backing from Dave King

Rangers manager Steven Gerrard prepares his team for the trip to Hearts. Picture: Alan Harvey/SNS
Rangers manager Steven Gerrard prepares his team for the trip to Hearts. Picture: Alan Harvey/SNS
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Steven Gerrard has called on Dave King and the Ibrox board to supply the level of financial support he needs to justify the chairman’s assertion that Rangers will be the dominant force next season.

King made the claim in a season-ticket renewal letter to supporters earlier this week, when he was also praiseworthy of the efforts of Gerrard, despite the fact Rangers are 11 points behind Celtic who are on the brink of a treble treble.

Gerrard is making his own efforts to enhance the squad by trying to convince Liverpool to loan him a number of their young players, including a return for Ryan Kent.

Having been linked with John Souttar of Hearts, Motherwell’s Jake Hastie and Greg Stewart – on loan from Birmingham at Aberdeen – he has also spoken positively about the local market.

However, he would like some clarity on how much he has to spend.

Gerrard said: “The staff and me as a manager need more backing in the summer. We haven’t got a magic wand to all of a sudden change Rangers into a dominant force overnight.

“It’s quite clear. You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to see that we do need a level of backing to add some quality to what we’ve already got.

“What everyone would like 
to know is what level of backing there will be but I don’t think that’s for the public domain.

“It’s quite clear we have tried to build a squad of players that is capable of competing.

“This squad that we have built have shown that they are hungry. They are willing to accept the challenge.

“They have gone above and beyond to try to make that 
happen, but the reality is that they need some help and some support.

“The board are aware of that. Our director of football Mark Allen and I are working as hard as we can with the recruitment team to identify those bits of quality, we need to help us go to the next level.”

Gerrard says King’s comments have not placed him under any more pressure.

He said: “There can’t be any more pressure on the Rangers manager. I think we all know this is a very pressurised job but I see it as a challenge. I obviously welcome the words the chairman has said in terms of him seeing a lot of progress being made

“We’ve had a chat recently on the phone and it gave me the opportunity to be really open and honest and give a reflection on the season so far.

“I’m sure we’ll be catching up again soon.”

Gerrard has already made it plain that he wants another loan deal for Kent, who has been Rangers’ best player of late and is reported to have attracted interest from several clubs. However, he also wants to entice more of the young Liverpool stars who can’t force their way into Jurgen Klopp’s squad.

He said: “I have had a conversation with Liverpool about a number of players. They already know I want to bring Ryan back.

“I told them who I would 
be interested in if they were available but we will have to wait and see how that progresses.

“People talk about big changes last summer but we didn’t spend tons and tons.

“The reality is Celtic bought one player that was more expensive than all the changes we made.

“We’re not in the same markets as Premier League clubs but there is still quality in other leagues that is affordable and reachable. There are ways to get quality in here as we did with Jermaine Defoe and Steven Davis.

“You wouldn’t believe the amount of work that is going on with Mark and the team 24 hours a day to make this team improve.

“It’s not a problem – it’s a challenge and that’s the reality of what is happening.

“If Celtic continue to get Champions league money then they can spend £9 million on one player and that makes the challenge and test more difficult for us.”

Gerard wants his side to finish the season with five victories, starting with Hearts this lunchtime at Tynecastle.

He said: “We’re trying to take 12 points from 12 against Hearts so that’s a challenge to the players.”

Kent and Alfredo Morelos remain suspended but Borna Barisic is fit again.