Jose Mourinho would struggle at Rangers, claims John Hartson

John Hartson believes Derek McInnes was right to reject Rangers as he claims even Jose Mourinho would struggle at the Ibrox club right now.
John Hartson believes Derek McInnes was right to turn down the Rangers job. Picture: John DevlinJohn Hartson believes Derek McInnes was right to turn down the Rangers job. Picture: John Devlin
John Hartson believes Derek McInnes was right to turn down the Rangers job. Picture: John Devlin

The former Celtic striker won six trophies in five years at Parkhead but believes Brendan Rodgers’ current side will match that in just two seasons as Rangers continue to suffer from recent disastrous managerial appointments.

Mark Warburton and Pedro Caixinha have both gone within the space of eight months after proving they weren’t up to the job, then after six weeks of dithering over the latter’s replacement their first choice McInnes decided he would rather stay at Aberdeen.

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Hartson is convinced that was probably the best decision for both parties as those in charge of recruitment at Ibrox can’t afford to make another mistake

“Jose Mourinho would struggle to do something special with Rangers,” Hartson said.

“I don’t think they are a fantastic set of players, I think Caixinha wasted a lot of money on a lot of duds so it’s going to take someone more than Derek McInnes to go in there.

“They need a sort of transition as they need better players but whoever appointed Caixinha and Warburton are the people who should be held accountable, not the players. The players just go out and try to do their best.

“If Rangers are just going to keep appointing managers who are nowhere near good enough or stable enough to manage that massive club then why aren’t the people making those decisions being made accountable for their mistakes. It’s easy to blame the manager and point the finger at the players but it is the decision makers. Someone is sitting nice and pretty behind it all watching the storm build up and these are the ones that are responsible.

“They are pretty much back to square one again but the good thing is they are picking up a few good results and while that continues it keeps people off your back.”

Of course it’s the second time in just seven months that McInnes has knocked back the chance to move on to a bigger club.

Last summer he rejected the offer to take over English Championship side Sunderland and had his contract extended at Pittodrie until at least the summer of 2020.

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However, Hartson isn’t convinced McInnes will still be around then and believes the Aberdeen manager is lucky to have such an understanding chairman in Stewart Milne.

He added: “That’s twice now Derek has gone to speak to other clubs so what does that tell you? Does he want to stay at Aberdeen or does he want to leave Aberdeen?

“I thought he was very fortunate to stay after going to speak to Sunderland in the summer. He wasn’t happy with what Sunderland were going to offer him and he was fortunate Aberdeen kept the door open for him.

“He is also very fortunate to have a fantastic owner, backer and supporter of his at Aberdeen because they could have lost their manager last week as Derek spoke to Rangers then decided he wanted to go back to Aberdeen. He is in a very privileged position to have a fantastic chairman and a group of supporters who are willing to welcome him back with open arms.”

Hartson initially concentrated on his media commitments after retiring as a player but has taken more interest in coaching since recovering from testicular cancer in 2009. He’s currently coaching the strikers at Championship side Livingston but admits he would love to be back involved with the Wales set-up

“Everybody knows my passion for my country,” he said. “I excelled as a centre forward for Wales so they know where I am. I was assistant manager for 14 months under Chris Coleman and was part of the interview process when Gary Speed got the job, God rest his soul.”

John Hartson was at CLAN Cancer Centre in Aberdeen to donate a cheque for £20,000 from his Foundation. The John Hartson Foundation has raised in the region of £750,000 in the past seven years and has targeted £1 million by 2020.