Walter Smith to make rare return to Ibrox

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Former Rangers manager 
Walter Smith will make a rare visit to Ibrox tonight to watch the club’s League Cup quarter-final against St Johnstone.

However, he admits that the warring factions inside the boardroom have forced him to avoid attending matches since he stepped down as chairman 14 months ago.

Walter Smith: Misses Ibrox. Picture: SNS

Walter Smith: Misses Ibrox. Picture: SNS

It remains to be seen whether the resignations of chief executive Graham Wallace and finance director Philip Nash will put an end to the turbulence but, as things stand, Smith is unlikely to be a regular visitor to the ground where he led the team for over 12 years.

“Before I left the board at Rangers I was going to a few of the games,” he said. “I’ve been to one or two but I haven’t been to an awful lot since I left.

“I watch the TV coverage and read a lot about it but I don’t go along to many matches. At first I didn’t go because I didn’t want people thinking I was . . . not interfering, but going to watch Alastair and the boys I’d left there. That was the main reason for not going back.

“When Charles Green asked me to go on the board I went back and going to games was 
another aspect of it.

“Since I left the board, the reason I don’t go back is because everybody keeps saying to me: ‘You are supporting that side, you are supporting this side or the other side’.

“I think I’m better not bothering going. I miss going to the games. I’ll go to the occasional one and I’ll go on Tuesday night to see how they do against St Johnstone.”

Smith was at Hampden on Sunday evening to watch boyhood hero Davie Wilson inducted into the Scottish Football Hall of Fame.

“Wee Davie worked beside my old man when he was a boy, strangely enough,” he said. “I went to Ibrox and watched him play in that fantastic team of the late 1950s and early 60s. It was an enjoyable period to go and watch them.

“He was one of the main ones and the number of goals he scored for a winger was incredible. Nowadays we don’t have wingers of that type.

“Davie and Jimmy Millar also came to play at Dundee United when I was there and he was a fantastic professional.

“They could have tailed off at the end of their careers but they had a great attitude and it was good for a young player like 
myself to see that.

“It was a big thrill – I’d never have imagined I’d have played alongside him. He was terrific, down to earth.

“Davie was also assistant manager at Dumbarton when I went there for a year.”