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Steven Gerrard: I won't make Rangers transfer demands amid financial uncertainty in football

 

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Steven Gerrard

Steven Gerrard

Steven Gerrard

Steven Gerrard will not put pressure on the Rangers board over his transfer plans amid growing financial uncertainty in football but he insists the directors are as ambitious and hungry for success as him.

Gerrard hopes to strengthen his squad after Rangers' title challenge fell away after New Year before they exited the Scottish Cup against Hearts.

Rangers made a loss of £11.3m in the 2018-19 campaign and expected to need £10m of funding from shareholders and other investors to see through the season before the coronavirus pandemic, which is impacting heavily on the finances of all clubs.

However, Gerrard is talking to sporting director Ross Wilson about transfer plans several times a day and is working hard to identify targets.

Gerrard said: "We have to see how it all plays out. All managers and all clubs are going to be in very similar situations but I'm in daily contact with the board and they are as hungry and as ambitious as I am.

"But one thing is for sure, there will be no pressure from my point of view. I certainly respect the situation we are in. It is a very unique and strange time.

"From a football point of view, I'm watching the media in the north and south and finances are going to be affected so I appreciate that and respect that.

"But one thing I can say is that from the top of the club to the bottom we are all as ambitious and hungry to keep trying to move things forward and improve because it's the only way we can find success."

Gerrard believes strengthening is the best way to ensure their collapse in form after the winter break is not repeated.

"I'd be lying if I said I'm sitting here with the formula because I think when that happens, sometimes it's a combination of things," he said.

"The strange thing was in the middle of it all we were still finding some performances against the likes of Braga, who are a fantastic team. We were doing so well in one competition and finding inconsistency in another.

"But look, you don't have to be a rocket scientist to know that when that does happen you need to find better players, keep making the squad and the team as strong as you can, keep moving it along in the right direction."

Gerrard added: “What I can say to the Rangers fans is we haven’t stopped. We have been as busy as ever, watching players in different positions, turning long lists into short lists.”

Gerrard hit the two-year mark in his Ibrox career this week and when asked if there would be a third anniversary, he laughed and said: “I think you should ask the board of directors that question.

“I will continue to work as hard as I can to get better from a personal point of view, to keep trying to improve the players we have got, to keep trying to strengthen the team.

“I think we have come so close to having success.

“We have from a European point of view, when you consider where we were when I came into the club and there was no qualification in Europe.

“We played extremely well in the League Cup final but Celtic are a good team who have been successful for a long time. They’re a club who have got finances, so they are a difficult club to catch and move.

“But we have definitely closed the gap, we are definitely improving and the pursuit carries on. I do my role to the best of my ability and try to make that as quick as possible.”

The Gers boss, meanwhile,  has revealed how he has been bumping into Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp during the coronavirus lockdown.

The Anfield legend has returned from Glasgow to his family home in Merseyside.

And while the former England captain admits he’s been struggling as a home school teacher for his kids, he has had the pleasant surprise of running into Klopp during his daily exercise.

“I’m sure Jurgen is eager to get back playing when it’s safe to do so to try and finish off the remainder of their season,” said the Ibrox chief. “Liverpool have been extremely strong for a few years now, they ran Man City ever so close last year, they’re a team that’s been in form for a long time and I think the job Jurgen has done has been incredible.

“They’re so exciting to watch, the mentality of the whole group, they all seem in the zone.”

Belfast Telegraph