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Focus is key for Gers, says Murty

By Andy Newport

Rangers caretaker manager Graeme Murty has ordered his players to put thoughts of a new manager out of their minds and focus on tomorrow's Glasgow derby at Celtic Park.

The Ibrox club moved a major step closer to replacing Mark Warburton on Thursday when Qatari club Al Gharafa announced they had agreed a deal to allow their boss, Pedro Caixinha, to leave for Glasgow.

But Rangers are yet to confirm an appointment and Murty looks almost certain to be in charge for the trip to face the runaway Ladbrokes Premiership leaders.

When asked whether it would be his last game in charge, Murty said: "I don't know. I actually didn't think I would be here for this one. I've got a smile on my face and looking forward to it."

Murty admitted he had done some basic research on Caixinha, who has also managed clubs in his native Portugal as well as Mexican team Santos Laguna.

"I think everyone in Glasgow has Googled it," Murty said. "We've had a look, I've had a look at numerous different people, but you can't control anything. It would be a massive waste of energy to be looking at that.

"I have got something fairly large on Sunday to consider."

Caixinha is expected to be in the stands tomorrow barring any hitches but Murty does not feel his anticipated presence will affect matters.

"It doesn't change," he said. "I am merely here to make sure the players have the detail on Celtic, have the detail on the occasion, make sure we get all of any extraneous detail out of the way, out of their heads, so they can focus on going and being excellent on the pitch. It's difficult but that's the job.

"The players have been in this situation before: there has been no one at the helm, apart from me. There has still been no one appointed.

"They just have to make sure they concentrate on what they can control. They have to concentrate on putting themselves forward in a good light."

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