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Rangers chiefs urged: sign up Davis

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Steven Davis

Steven Davis

Steven Davis

Steven Whittaker hopes Rangers will be able to secure their star players on longer-term deals now that Craig Whyte has been installed as the new owner.

Whyte successfully completed his takeover on Friday, wiping out the club's debt and promising £25million investment in the playing squad over the next five years.

Whyte has claimed Rangers would have had to sell goalkeeper Allan McGregor if his bid to buy the club had fallen through.

And Whittaker now wants to see the Scotland number one and other key personnel, such as Northern Ireland star Steven Davis, secured on new contracts.

He said: “They have shown over the whole time they have been here what key players they are. The longer they can stay at the club, the more beneficial it will be for the team.”

The versatile full-back is also relishing the competition for places next season that is set to be sparked by new players arriving over the summer.

He added: “There are hopefully going to be additions to the squad and that can only bring more of a fight for places.

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“You need to play well and keep playing well to stay in the team so it will definitely be a positive thing.”

For now, though, the main focus is on delivering a third successive title and Whittaker claims Rangers never gave up hope even when the odds appeared to be stacked against them.

The Scottish champions head into tonight's visit of Dundee United with a single point advantage at the top of the Clydesdale Bank Premier League with two games to go. Whittaker said: “It has been a hard season and there have been hiccups along the way. But, as a squad, we always still believed that we could give it our best shot. Whether that took us to the title or not, it was something that we aimed to do, it was something that we wanted to do.

“There was always a little bit of belief that we could still do it and it has shown in the determination and spirit of the team.” Whittaker was reluctant to be drawn on comments made by Neil Lennon, after the Celtic boss urged United to “compete” at Ibrox and “give Rangers a game” after 5-0 and 4-0 wins over Motherwell and Hearts respectively.

He said: “We are just here to concentrate on ourselves.

“We approached the previous two games very well and we started at a very high tempo and the teams haven't coped with that.

“We look to do the same in the last two games as well. All the boys are up for the task and that shows in our performances.”

Rangers manager Walter Smith handed out a reminder to Lennon that Dundee United have already won at Ibrox this season.

“The games that we've had have been difficult enough games for us and that's all I want to say at the present moment,” he said. “Dundee United have won here at Ibrox so that's how difficult a game we will face.”


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