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Bougherra makes pledge to repay faith of Rangers fans


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Rangers defender Madjid Bougherra has revealed his delight at erasing Carlos Cuellar from the minds of the Ibrox faithful.

The Algerian powerhouse has been a shining light this season since replacing fans' favourite Cuellar following the Spanish star's move to Aston Villa. And now Bougherra is on a mission to reward supporters by overcoming Celtic on Sunday to lift the Co-operative Insurance Cup.

'People recognise me whenever I go to the shops and, during the last transfer window, the Rangers fans pleaded with me not to leave,' revealed Bougherra.

'I was surprised they begged me to stay, as I had only been at the club for five months. But they said they loved me as I had replaced a player they considered irreplaceable in Cuellar.

'Carlos had been voted Player of the Year last season but was then transferred to Aston Villa. The fans were unhappy, as he was their idol and they didn't think anyone could replace him.

'But they have since taken me to their hearts and forgotten about him. Even though I am focused during matches, I can still hear them chanting my name.'

Sunday sees Rangers on the first leg of a money-spinning Treble. And Sportsmail understands the cash-strapped club have set aside a £1.5million pot for squad bonuses if they win three domestic trophies for the first time in six years.

That would suit Bougherra who, despite claiming his Glasgow wages are little better than at previous club Charlton, had no intention of joining Newcastle or Marseille in January, despite chairman Sir David Murray's need for a significant sale.

'I could make twice as much money at Newcastle,' he said. 'Rangers don't pay me much more than what I was on at Charlton.

'I am not among their best-paid players - I am someone who has joined them from a Championship club. But, in sporting terms, I am at a big club and I am happy with what I have, as it enables me to live well and look after my family. My heart is with Rangers and I want another season at the very least here.

'I've climbed the ladder from Gueugnon and Crewe. It would be illogical to leave Rangers for a club struggling to stay up, knowing I could play Champions League football next season - or at worst be in the Europa League.

'I am ambitious and, if I move on, it will be to a classy club competing for trophies. My agent heard through an intermediary that Marseille were keen on me. But I did not follow up on their interest.

'I feel more cut out for the British style of play. Things are different here in terms of the way we prepare for games, training sessions, the passion for football and the attitude. Nothing motivates me to return to France.'

Rangers, whose accounts have been hit by a lack of European revenue this term, won't skimp if Smith's side deliver the Treble. It is believed the incentive payments will total around £100,000 per man if they win Sunday's Co-operative Insurance Cup Final then claim the SPL title and Scottish Cup.

The championship is the big earner, of course, with this season's winners guaranteed an automatic place in the lucrative group stages of the Champions League.

That would bring in up to £15m in revenue so Murray and chief executive Martin Bain would be only too happy to hand back some of the cash to the men who win the medals.

It is believed the breakdown is roughly £15,000

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I don't know if he's made me forget about Cuellar, he was such a fantastic defender so key to our nearly successful season. I don't think Madjid is as classy a defender but he gives his all and has barely put a foot wrong, he's held our defence together. It's a good thing he didn't go because we'd be in a worse position if he had.

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We've set aside £1.5m in bonuses? Let the players fucking do their jobs instead of paying out money in bonuses all the time.

If playing for the team is not motivation enough for them then punt them! No wonder we never made much money last year when we paid out a fortune in bonuses in the Uefa Cup.

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There is ONE deference between Carlos and Madjid. Athleticism. Cuellar was like a Brick wall. Bougherra is like a bulldozer.

If only we had the two of them :unsure:

The amount of money for the bonus hardly makes any sense considering what we actually get for winning the tournament

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I don't know if he's made me forget about Cuellar, he was such a fantastic defender so key to our nearly successful season. I don't think Madjid is as classy a defender but he gives his all and has barely put a foot wrong, he's held our defence together. It's a good thing he didn't go because we'd be in a worse position if he had.

I agree. In my eyes he is our player of the year so far. Just think how much better he'll be if we manage to sign another quality centre half.

By the way Ladbrokes are offering 50/1 for him to score first goal on Sunday! I think thats worth putting a few quid on.

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If we had Cuellar and Bougherra at CB, they'd have been as well giving us the league title before it started.

Davie's not been bad for 39 mind you :pipe:

Big Davie's been superb again this season and if i was Walter i'd get him signed up for another season.

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If we had Cuellar and Bougherra at CB, they'd have been as well giving us the league title before it started.

Davie's not been bad for 39 mind you :pipe:

Big Davie's been superb again this season and if i was Walter i'd get him signed up for another season.

...Just about speechless...

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If we had Cuellar and Bougherra at CB, they'd have been as well giving us the league title before it started.

Davie's not been bad for 39 mind you :pipe:

Big Davie's been superb again this season and if i was Walter i'd get him signed up for another season.

He'd be first choice if he signed for another year.

Think we should be looking for a faster defender, it'd help the team as a whole.

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Bougherra has been my POTY so far. I have not missed Cuellar (you know what I mean) and that just goes to show how good a player and how quickly Bougherra has been playing/settled.

I hope he remains at the club for years to come, I'd love to bring in another quality CB to partner him.

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If we had Cuellar and Bougherra at CB, they'd have been as well giving us the league title before it started.

Davie's not been bad for 39 mind you :pipe:

Big Davie's been superb again this season and if i was Walter i'd get him signed up for another season.

...Just about speechless...

If we manage to qualify for Champions League next season, Davie Weir is the last player I'd want to see playing. Top quality sides would run riot if he was to play!

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If we had Cuellar and Bougherra at CB, they'd have been as well giving us the league title before it started.

Davie's not been bad for 39 mind you :pipe:

Big Davie's been superb again this season and if i was Walter i'd get him signed up for another season.

He'd be first choice if he signed for another year.

Think we should be looking for a faster defender, it'd help the team as a whole.

Depending on Villa's position next season, they could get a nice pot of money. I think Carlos would be deemed surplus to requirements. A loan on the horizon? Would you?

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If we had Cuellar and Bougherra at CB, they'd have been as well giving us the league title before it started.

Davie's not been bad for 39 mind you :pipe:

Big Davie's been superb again this season and if i was Walter i'd get him signed up for another season.

big davie has had his day, he has lost his pace, cant pass a ball and gets caught out of position. he will be okay on the coaching side of the game.

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If we had Cuellar and Bougherra at CB, they'd have been as well giving us the league title before it started.

Davie's not been bad for 39 mind you :pipe:

Big Davie's been superb again this season and if i was Walter i'd get him signed up for another season.

He'd be first choice if he signed for another year.

Think we should be looking for a faster defender, it'd help the team as a whole.

Yes i think we'd all like a younger, faster defender but in our current financial position that may not be possible.

Davie Weir is a good, reliable centre half who we can trust and tbh he strolls through most spl games, particularly old firm games.

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If we had Cuellar and Bougherra at CB, they'd have been as well giving us the league title before it started.

Davie's not been bad for 39 mind you :pipe:

Big Davie's been superb again this season and if i was Walter i'd get him signed up for another season.

He'd be first choice if he signed for another year.

Think we should be looking for a faster defender, it'd help the team as a whole.

Yes i think we'd all like a younger, faster defender but in our current financial position that may not be possible.

Davie Weir is a good, reliable centre half who we can trust and tbh he strolls through most spl games, particularly old firm games.

He does that, no arguments there.

Hesselink and Samaras are so deep in his pockets that I'm surprised they don't weight him down when he's jumping for a header.

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Bougherra has been my POTY so far. I have not missed Cuellar (you know what I mean) and that just goes to show how good a player and how quickly Bougherra has been playing/settled.

I hope he remains at the club for years to come, I'd love to bring in another quality CB to partner him.

This bit says to me that he won't be here for years to come, but I'm glad that he'd only move to a "classy club."

'I am ambitious and, if I move on, it will be to a classy club competing for trophies.
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