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Graeme Murty SACKED by Rangers as Steven Gerrard closes in on manager's role

Graeme Murty has been sacked by Rangers after his side's 5-0 thumping in Sunday's Old Firm derby.

The club are locked in talks with Liverpool legend Steven Gerrard over taking control of the Ibrox side, who have three games left in their bid to secure a second-placed finish in the Scottish Premiership.

Rangers hope to make further comment on the managerial situation on the near future.

The club said in a statement: "Rangers are grateful to Graeme, who did not hesitate when asked last October to become interim manager after the departure of Pedro Caixinha and then, at the turn of the year, when he was offered the role as manager until the end of the season.

"Graeme has had to contend with difficult and challenging circumstances but conducted himself in a thoroughly professional manner. He will take some time to consider his options, which include returning to his role at the Rangers Academy."

Nobody from the club spoke to the media after Saturday's defeat to Celtic and inside 48 hours of the result, Murty's spell in charge came to an end after a meeting with managing director Stewart Robertson on Tuesday morning.

In 29 games as Rangers manager, Murty won 18, drew two and lost nine.

Murty had taken control after Pedro Caixinha's departure in October, handed a short-term deal until the end of the season.

As the term progressed, it became evident that he would not remain in charge beyond the summer, his cause not helped by three successive defeats to Celtic, including last month's 4-0 hammering in the Scottish Cup semi-final and Sunday's humbling at Celtic Park.

Rumours began last Monday that Steven Gerrard would join as manager this summer and the Anfield icon became odds-on favourite when Gers chairman Dave King was spotted at Liverpool's Champions League clash with Roma last Tuesday.

Since then, reports have suggested that a deal is all-but agreed between the two parties. The latest indications suggest that the negotiations could be completed by the end of the week.

Gerrard is now as short as 1/12 to accept the Rangers role and if he does, rumours suggest that he will bring in former Liverpool team-mate Gary McAllister as his assistant.

Murty had said before Sunday's Old Firm clash that he wouldn't give up the job without a fight and said he was "desperate for the opportunity" to bring in his own players during the summer transfer window.

Rangers currently sit three points behind second-placed Aberdeen and still have to face Kilmarnock at home before trips to Aberdeen and Hibernian to end the campaign.

Hibs are level on points with Rangers and a fourth-place finish might not only see the club miss out on a Europa League slot should Motherwell beat Celtic in the Scottish Cup final, but it would see them lose out on a £560,000 cash windfall compared to ending the season as runners up.

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