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Steven's Day: Gerrard unveiled as Rangers manager

The Liverpool legend has signed a four-year deal at Ibrox.

Updated May 4th 2018, 2:23 PM

RANGERS HAVE UNVEILED former Liverpool and England midfielder Steven Gerrard as their new manager, confirming he would join the Scottish Premiership club this summer on a four-year deal.

“I am honoured to become the next manager of Rangers,” Gerrard said in a statement on the club’s website. “I have enormous respect for this football club, and its history and tradition.

“I can’t wait to start this new journey at Rangers as we look to build on the many successes that this club has achieved.”

Chairman Dave King said: “From the very beginning, talks have been extremely positive and we believe that Steven is the right man to drive Rangers forward.”

Gerrard, who has only previously worked with Liverpool’s U18s, was an inspirational captain and Champions League winner in a 17-year career at Anfield but as a managerial rookie, the 37-year-old faces a huge challenge to compete with bitter rivals Celtic for domestic dominance in Scotland.

Celtic’s 5-0 thrashing of Rangers on Sunday sealed a seventh straight Scottish Premiership title for the green-and-white side of Glasgow.

Gerrard also faces the challenge of outfoxing his former manager at Liverpool in Celtic’s Brendan Rodgers.

The arrival of the former England captain will restore some star power to a league that has found it increasingly hard to attract and hold on to top players against the booming television revenues of the Premier League.

Rangers are still recovering from the fallout of their liquidation in 2012 and subsequent demotion to the fourth tier of Scottish football.

In their second season back in the top flight, Rangers trail Celtic by 13 points, and are locked in a battle with Aberdeen and Hibernian just to finish second.

Rangers fans excited by the prospect of Gerrard’s arrival have cited his stature as aiding the Ibrox club’s ability to recruit a better quality player in what is expected to be a busy transfer window.

But Rangers still have to overcome a huge financial disparity with Celtic. Bolstered by revenue from the Champions League, Celtic’s £90 million turnover last year was three times that of their Old Firm rivals.

Betting on an inexperienced manager with no previous ties to Scottish football is also seen as another huge risk taken by Rangers’ beleaguered board.

Caretaker manager Graeme Murty, who had been promoted from his role as the club’s U20 coach, was sacked this week after six months in charge.

© AFP 2018

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