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Rangers boss Mark Warburton insists club won’t sell stars on the cheap

Rangers manager Mark Warburton (SNS Group / Craig Foy)
Rangers manager Mark Warburton (SNS Group / Craig Foy)

MARK WARBURTON admits every Rangers player has a price – but insists the Ibrox side will not be forced to sell on the cheap.

The Englishman claimed earlier this week that Scottish talent was undervalued by clubs from elsewhere in Europe.

He spoke out after it was claimed big-spending German outfit RB Leipzig were ready to make a £6million swoop for winger Barrie McKay.

That kind of cash would represent a significant shot in the arm for a club still dogged by financial problems.

However, Warburton insists Rangers can afford to reject any offer that falls short of the valuations they put on their top performers.

He said: “We won’t be forced [into selling] at all.

“The club is building. The board’s intention is to take the club back to where it needs to be, so the target has to be to hold on to our best players.

Barrie McKay (SNS Group / Rob Casey)
Barrie McKay (SNS Group / Rob Casey)

“But every club in the game will have a price for their players.

“Can you put a price on someone like Barrie McKay? Of course you can. I won’t tell you what it is but of course you can. You could put a value on Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi.

“The job of a board and the management of the club is to determine what the value is – but it has to represent good value.

“That value will be set after discussions. We’ll look at the market and decide what’s acceptable. It’s about gauging recent activity and, I guess, future potential too.

“If someone comes in for one of our players and it’s at a price that is deemed to represent good business for Rangers Football Club, then all well and good.”

Warburton reckons Scottish clubs have been unable to squeeze every penny of value when selling players on because of the “derogatory” way the Scottish game is viewed down south and abroad.

But he believes it is down to clubs north of the border to selling themselves in a more positive fashion.

Asked about his claims that an air of negativity was holding Scottish football back, he said: “It comes from everywhere, it comes from inside Scotland. There seems to be a negative attitude about the game, about pitches, about the players.

“But the fact is the talent is here.

“I remember a year ago being asked, ‘Where has all the talent gone?’ It’s here. We just have to give it the chance to shine and to flourish. Are you telling me there are no good Scottish players now?

“I use our own examples. Look at Barrie, look at the young boys coming through the academy like Liam Burt, Billy Gilmour, Zak Rudden, Jack Thomson and Jordan Houston. The talent is there it just needs to be given a chance.

“Maybe it needs a confidence boost, a better stage to play on. We need to start talking up our game.”

Reece Oxford (Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)
Reece Oxford (Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Meanwhile, Warburton refused to be drawn into specifics about his plans for the final five days of the transfer window.

Reports have linked the Light Blues boss with another loan switch for West Ham defender Reece Oxford but Warburton has decided to play his cards close to his chest.

He said: “We’re never going to discuss individual players. That is one of many names we have apparently been linked with.

“But from our point of view we will keep our business private and try to get it over the line.”

And Warburton was also coy when quizzed on Philippe Senderos’ Ibrox future.

The former Arsenal centre-back has barely featured since he was sent-off during a nightmare debut against Celtic back in September.

But when asked if the former Switzerland international remained part of his plans, he said: “I can only pick 11 players. I would love to play a 5-5-5 formation but unfortunately the rules prevent me doing so.

“If a player is not playing it’s because another player is doing well.

“Clint Hill has done very well of late, Rob Kiernan has stepped in while Danny Wilson is getting back to fitness, so it’s about using the squad appropriately.”