WALTER Smith today congratulated managerial protégé Steven Gerrard for leading Rangers to their first Scottish title in 10 years – and predicted that returning to the Champions League will see Ibrox club out even after years financial hardship.
Smith was elated when Rangers were crowned champions for the first time since 2011, when his second trophy-laden stint as his childhood heroes ended yesterday when Celtic were held to a 0- draw. 0 by Dundee United at Tannadice.
The great Gerrard of Liverpool and England has been grateful for the help and advice he has received from the Scotsman since his appointment almost three years ago and considers the coach the winner of nine in a row like a mentor.
The 73-year-old believes the current directors deserve huge credit for funding the Rangers’ rebirth over the past six years and hopes the money they receive from winning the Premiership will help them function within their means at the time. ‘to come up.
Rangers, who face Slavia Prague in the last 16 Europa League games in the Czech Republic on Thursday night, enter the Champions League third qualifying round in the 2021/22 campaign following their title triumph .
Speaking to The Essential Scottish Football Podcast, Smith said, “It’s been a long wait for every Rangers fan. It’s one of those things that when you get there, it’s still really nice. The circumstances are what have been a very strange time for the club over the past 10 years.
“We are the ones coming back to what all Rangers fans would consider a bit of normalcy. I mean everyone is saying Celtic gets 10-in-A-Row or prevents Celtic from getting 10-in-A-Row, but the most important thing for Rangers was to win a championship again.
“The whole aspect of winning a championship now is the financial gain it gives to the club and the Rangers who badly needed the financial support.
“The Rangers managers, the current managers, have done a fantastic job of bringing the club up to a level. But they need help and they are getting help on the pitch now.
“While not in any way accountable, the financial aspects of the club are pretty straightforward. If you get into the Champions League, the club makes money and Rangers badly need that success on the pitch and Steven Gerrard brought it. to them. ”
You can listen to Walter Smith’s full interview here: https://essentialpodcasts.co.uk/