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Steven Davis is vital to Rangers: Gordon Durie

Rangers can’t afford to lose Steven Davis — that’s the view of former Ibrox hero Gordon Durie.

Durie, who was part of the phenomenal nine-in-a-row team that won the league from 1989 to 97, is worried at reports Davis could leave the SPL giants and showcase his talent in the Premier League again.

Everton are leading the chase for the Northern Ireland international, who gained top flight experience in England with Aston Villa and Fulham.

“I think it would be a disaster if we lost him,” said the Scotland international who made 125 appearances for the Gers between 1993 and 2000.

“He did well on the right, but I think Steven prefers to play in the middle and that is why Walter Smith let Kevin Thomson go.

“He was Rangers’ best player last season. He is one of their biggest assets and it would be a disaster if they let him go.

“But he has already proved himself in the English Premier League so he has nothing to prove by going back there.”

Durie joined other Old Firm legends to help launch the Tennents Football Flash Event in Glasgow this week.

The former Chelsea and Spurs man also admitted that the pressure is on Kyle Lafferty to win over the supporters this season.

The Northern Ireland striker will get a chance to lead the line as the Gers aim to keep hold of the SPL crown, but his Ibrox career has been littered with controversial moments and it’s time he let his goalscoring do the talking.

“The big fella has struggled a bit, but he hasn’t really played in his proper position,” added Durie.

“He is an out-and-out striker and I think he will get more games through the middle this year.

“He has had a bit of stick and I think he will have to hit the ground running.

“When he has played through the middle he has shown he has something to offer and he is going to have to start proving that now.”

Smith will still be able to bring in more players if he secures main target Nikica Jelavic.

Smith confirmed yesterday that negotiations with the player and Rapid Vienna were continuing with a deal worth upwards of £3million possibly coming to fruition next week.

The purchase would be Smith's first since August 2008, but the Rangers manager is keen to add a total of three players this month with a wide man his other priority.

“Something will happen sooner or later,” added Durie. “It has got to hasn’t it?

“Rangers have lost six players and nobody has come in. It is a matter of waiting for the right one.

“Celtic have brought six or seven in, but it doesn’t always work out if you bring too many players in at the one time.

“I think Rangers have a strong XI, but if you start getting injuries like you did with John Fleck, then it is going to be tough. That is one less than they have already and if they have injuries and suspensions then the manager clearly needs to bring in more cover.”

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