FOOTBALL: Confusion as Mark Warburton exits Rangers

Mark Warburton
Mark Warburton

Mark Warburton’s tenure as Rangers manager came to a dramatic end on Friday night.

The Ladbrokes Premiership club announced in a 9pm statement that they had accepted the resignations of Warburton, his assistant David Weir and the club’s head of recruitment Frank McParland.

Reports then emerged that Warburton denied resigning, with BBC Scotland stating the Englishman was unaware of the club’s statement and was consulting his legal team.

Rangers stood by the announcement, meaning Warburton’s reign was at an end.

In the lengthy statement, Rangers said they had been advised earlier this week, at a meeting with the management team’s representative, that the trio “wished to resign their positions and leave the club on condition that Rangers agreed to waive its rights to substantial compensation”.

Rangers said their agreement to waive the compensation would “assist the management team to join another club”.

Warburton’s position had been under scrutiny due to poor results and the massive deficit to Premiership leaders Celtic, which now stands at 27 points.

He had been linked with a move to Nottingham Forest, but the Sky Bet Championship club on Thursday night handed caretaker Gary Brazil the reins until the end of the season.

Rangers said they had agreed to release the trio, despite the potential financial cost, because it was “important that Rangers has a football management team that wants to be at the club”.

Under-20s coach Graeme Murty - a former Reading player and Scotland international - will take interim charge of the first team for Sunday’s William Hill Scottish Cup fifth-round tie against Morton.

And former Northern Ireland keeper Tommy Wright - who is now the manager at St Johnstone - has been named among the possible replacements to take over at the Glasgow outfit.