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Kenny McDowall would welcome Rangers return for Ally McCoist

By Gavin McCafferty

Rangers caretaker manager Kenny McDowall would welcome the return of Ally McCoist to first-team duties, but he remains unsure what plans the new-look Ibrox board have for the remainder of the season.

McCoist was placed on gardening leave by the outgoing regime on December 21, after triggering a 12-month notice period with his resignation.

Rangers' Scottish Championship title bid was already floundering by then, but they have since won only three out of nine matches and slipped to third place, as well as going out of both major cup competitions.

McDowall met new board members on Friday following the Dave King-led boardroom takeover, but no new talks are planned as he prepares for the visit of fellow play-off hopefuls Queen of the South tonight.

When asked whether he would welcome McCoist's restoration, the reluctant manager said: "If it was Ally, obviously I came with Ally, so obviously that would appeal to me, but it's difficult to answer because the board have their own ideas and it's totally up to them.

"We have all had to muck in during a difficult period and we have all done our best to keep going and keep in contention for promotion."

New board members, who include Paul Murray, Douglas Park and John Gilligan, are reported to be meeting former Fulham boss Felix Magath, who is a Rangers shareholder.

"They are entitled to speak to whoever they want to speak to regarding the manager's situation," said McDowall, who is also serving his notice.

"I'm getting paid to take the team and I will carry on my duties until I'm told otherwise."

Those duties have been more of a burden for McDowall than any other feeling, by his own admission, but he will at least have the support of a potentially full Ibrox tonight.

Thousands of Rangers fans have ended their boycott of the club, which was designed to force the old board out and long queues have been reported at the ticket office.

"The crowd play a big part when you are playing at Ibrox and get behind you," said McDowall.

"The fans have had to put up with a lot in the last four years."

Scottish Championship: Ibrox, 7.45 pm


Q of the South

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