FORMER Rangers captain and assistant manager David Weir has criticised Ibrox chairman Dave King for the statement he issued on Tuesday, fearing it could derail Graeme Murty’s preparation for this weekend’s Scottish Cup semi-final against Celtic.

While praising the job done by Murty since stepping back into the breach after Pedro Caixinha’s sacking, King also said; “Whoever is appointed must be able to meet the unique challenges of managing Rangers and ensuring immediate success.

“It is a priority that we commence next season with the best appointment we can make and that we move forward rapidly.”

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That has cast dubiety over Murty’s future, and Weir thinks that with such a huge match on the horizon, Rangers could have done without any further uncertainty from the boardroom.

“Graeme Murty is the manager and he deserves the respect of being manager,” Weir said. “Obviously the statement cast dubiety on that and put it up for debate again, whereas I think that Rangers should be focusing on the semi-final just now and focusing on the manager they’ve got and giving him as much support as they can, rather than that.

“Obviously season tickets are up for renewal, so that was possibly part of it, but looking at it from a coaching point of view it’s probably a question that Graeme didn’t need asking.

“I’m sure his press conference this week will be different to the one that he really wanted to be speaking about.

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“I think he’ll do his job, which is to manage the team and get them prepared the best way he can for the weekend. He’s a professional. I don’t know what he’s thinking, but I’m sure he could have done without it.

“I’m sure it’s not the question he wants to be asked in the week leading up to a massive game. I’m sure he would rather be talking about and concentrating on the football, so it doesn’t make his life any easier.

“He’s got to turn it into a positive, and that will be his mindset. He’ll be thinking ‘right, how do we turn this into a positive to give us a better chance of winning on Sunday?’”

Weir thinks it is no coincidence that a lack of stability in the dugout over recent years at Rangers has correlated with a lack of success on the field.

“Rangers have had five or six managers in the past three or four years, temporary and permanent,” he said. “They’ve had 12 or 13 managers in their whole history and that does not tell too many lies about what has been going on recently.

“Chopping and changing managers seems to be normal in football nowadays but when you actually stand back and look at it, stability is a large part of being successful.”