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Deadline day for Rangers as players await news

Rangers players will today discover whether they still have a job as administrators finalise plans to make savings of £1million a month.

Administrators Duff and Phelps continued discussions with manager Ally McCoist after his team's 2-1 defeat by Hearts on Saturday in a bid to find a compromise solution over wage cuts and redundancies, but have set a deadline of today for a final decision to be made.

Joint administrator David Whitehouse revealed on Saturday that job losses were "likely" and insisted PFA Scotland's offer for wage deferrals was unacceptable.

Whitehouse said: "Deferring wages is sustaining the high level of cost base, which we have to address to make the business saleable."

McCoist will not deliver the bad news personally to any players who will be made redundant, but he has promised to be waiting outside the room to offer his support to those who are axed.

Speaking after Saturday's 2-1 defeat at Ibrox, McCoist said: "It's not my job, I'm not making anybody redundant, I'm not telling anybody they have lost their job.

"I won't be [in with the players] but I will be waiting outside if and when it happens. My job is to support and be there, which I will be."

McCoist, who refused to confirm whether he had offered to work for free until the end of the season, paid tribute to the entire workforce at the club.

He added: "Morale and an inner strength to keep going and be there for each other, to me, is really evident and very strong. That will help us get through it."

The administrators said they hoped the cuts would make the club more attractive to interested parties, who have been set a deadline of March 16 to make first indicative bids.

Whitehouse said: "We have now got a significant level of interest in terms of potential purchasers.

"The vast majority have expressed a desire that they would wish to formulate their plans to make a bid for the business based on a materially reduced cost structure from that which currently exists, so that they can approach the business with a cleaner sheet of paper in terms of new investment."

However, Whitehouse was less optimistic about the club's hopes of playing in Europe next season, saying a route out of administration before the March 31 deadline to obtain a club licence would be "highly problematic".

Rangers' lead over third-placed Motherwell was cut to three points as the Lanarkshire side won 2-0 against Dunfermline.

Belfast Telegraph


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