James Tavernier believes the Rangers managerial vacancy remains a highly attractive prospect for some of the highest-profile names in British football.
Among those strongly linked with the job since Pedro Caixinha’s dismissal last week is Alan Pardew, the vastly-experienced former English Premier League Manager of the Year whom Tavernier played under at Newcastle United.
Pardew is among the bookies’ favourites for the Rangers job, along with Aberdeen manager Derek McInnes and current interim boss Graeme Murty.
Right-back Tavernier can see a strong case for all three men and is confident the Ibrox board will have no shortage of top quality interest in the role.
“This is definitely still a big job,” he said. “You have 50,000 at every home game and we sell out our away allocation of tickets everywhere we go. The fanbase is massive and the demands are massive too, with ambitions of Champions League football. I can’t imagine this job wouldn’t attract a big name.
“Alan Pardew had some great years at Newcastle and he gave me a chance in European football and the Premier League. He knows his stuff. He has been in the top league and obviously he has not got a job at the minute. There are names in the hat, but whether he has been offered it or would take it... it is obviously speculation. Graeme Murty is a top lad. He has come in previously and done a great job as caretaker, so we knew he would do a good job this time too.
“He puts the responsibility in our hands because we are the lads that go on the pitch or the training field and put on that Rangers shirt so we have to deliver. He gives us the foundations and we have got to produce it.
“I think he has got it all to possibly be a manager, definitely. It is not for me to decide. It is not my decision. That is for the people upstairs. He has got off to a great start and we want to go into the international break with another win. He has got everything to be a manager.
“Derek McInnes has done a great job up there at Pittodrie. He knows the league very well and has done great with Aberdeen. I can’t really talk about the position, but he is a manager that stands out in the Scottish Premiership. He knows Rangers as well.
“But it’s up to the board to decide the approach. I’m here to work hard as a player and play under whatever manager and in what style he chooses. You have to adapt as a professional.”
Tavernier played his part in Rangers’ 3-1 win at Hearts last Saturday as they began the post-Caixinha era with a victory which has them in upbeat mood ahead of today’s meeting with Partick Thistle at Ibrox.
The two-goal return of Kenny Miller last week highlighted the self-defeating folly of Caixinha’s decision to banish the influential veteran from the first team in the closing weeks of his chaotic tenure.
“It was disappointing not to have Kenny in the team when you know he’s a big figure in the dressing room,” added Tavernier. “You see the response we had from him at Hearts.
“It was Pedro’s decision at the time and you can’t argue with the manager once he’s made a decision. It’s done and dusted now and Kenny is up and running. I don’t know what went wrong for Pedro. Sometimes it doesn’t work out for players or certain managers and if the results don’t go your way you are under pressure.
“We’ve seen it down in England – if you don’t get results you are under pressure. This is a demanding club too if results aren’t right.”
Tavernier, though, insists there is no discord between the summer signings Caixinha made and the players who were already at the club.
“No matter what manager comes in they always like their own players,” he added. “The lads here have stuck together. Pedro brought in a good bunch of lads and we all have a laugh on the training pitch together and in the changing room.
“It’s down to everyone to work hard so that when the new manager comes in we’re all in contention.”