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Published Date: 11 April 2010

By David Weir

There has been a lot of talk lately about who will own Rangers next season and whether Walter Smith will still be at the club. The situation at the club has been well documented, but the manager has been a massive part in how well we have handled it.

It has actually been pushed under the carpet to a certain degree because of the way the manager has conducted himself and made the best of the situation and, I think, without him, the club would head straight back into turmoil.

Players who are out of contract and even ones still under contract will make decisions based on whether or not he will be here next season. It will be a big factor. It would affect my decision, but at the moment I don't have a decision to make because I have not been offered a contract. I would like to play on for as long as I can, but for that to happen I have to be offered a contract.

I suppose being talked about when it comes to Player the Year awards might help in that regard.

It's that time of the year when plaudits are handed out and while it is nice to be talked about in connection with those kind of awards, the only prize I'm focusing on is the league title. That's the one everyone wants and, unlike most of the others, it's not subjective, it's not about people's opinions, but it is a real indication of success. And, contrary to what some people may think, it's not Rangers' yet. We still have a couple of games to win, notwithstanding what might happen elsewhere, and I just want us to get on with it.

People have been talking as though it's a foregone conclusion for a long time but we have, genuinely, never felt that way. I think when you are at a club where people expect so much there is almost a fear of failure and we are still aware that we could end up with egg on our faces. When you are so far ahead in the league, there should be an element of enjoyment to the run-in but to have a degree of that we have to wrap things up and do it sooner rather than later.

As for the Player of the Year, it's unusual for me to be linked with things like that. I won a few at Everton at club level but when it comes to the PFA or football writers' (awards] I've never really had any success. I remember I was nominated once when I was at Hearts but that was a hundred years ago!

But, like most things, I think they tend to be influenced by success. If you have played for a team that has won the league there is always a greater chance. But they also seem to favour flair players, guys who can produce something that wee bit special to turn games, and that's just the nature of football. People pay to see goals and players who can make things happen. They are the players who get the headlines and, in my experience, the big contracts and big money! So why not the awards as well?

I know it's hard to judge your own team, but I don't think we have too many players who fall into that category, we're not really a team with a lot of flair. I think we have performed well as a team and we have been consistent and players have done a very good job but I suppose Steve Davis is the closest we have had to someone who can produce a pass or do that something special. He has weighed in with some important goals and it's not just his passing, he also has a great workrate.

But it's players like Aiden McGeady you always think of when it comes to voting for these awards. He started the season so well and was the form player in the country and was the one player everyone was noticing. We have seen him quieten down a bit since then but he is still more than capable. Other than that, you can look around and see (Hibernian's] Anthony Stokes and he has scored a lot of goals and Andy Webster has done well at Dundee United, while some of the young lads at Motherwell have had great seasons and they have a very good defensive record and a lot of that is down to their goalkeeper John Ruddy. There are a number of good candidates out there, I'm just not sure there has been one real stand-out, as there has been in other years.

I think I have had a consistent season and, touch wood, I have played the majority of games which has pleased me but I still think, ultimately, we are all judged on how successful we are and if you win the league then you start to be judged as a success and move higher up the pecking order when it comes to these individual awards.

One guy who should definitely be considered a strong candidate as the best young player of the year is Danny Wilson. I know it's been said that I have talked him through games but, to be honest, I haven't really had to look after him too much. He is a very good player and someone with great potential and he has delivered at this level. To play in Rangers' first team and get as many games as he has, playing in over half of our matches this season, and perform so consistently deserves great credit and he has never let any of it go to his head. Even now, with so much speculation, he has never let it affect him. To say whether he should go to England or not or state whether he would be a success there and hold down a first-team place at a club like Liverpool is all just a matter for conjecture at this time but there is no doubting he is quality and if he keeps progressing the way he has been there is no reason to say anything other than he should be good enough. I know some people will be telling him to go, others will say he should stay at Rangers and keep learning his trade but no one should deny him his opportunity if Rangers receive an offer they are happy with and that's what he wants.

I have been in his situation as a relatively young player and it's hard to resist that pot of gold at the end of the rainbow; it would be in any walk of life and most players playing in the SPL, in fact most players playing in the majority of the leagues around the world, would like the opportunity to play in the Premiership. But players do come and go. It's been the case here before and Carlos Cuellar had a good season with us and moved on and there has been speculation about Madjid (Bougherra] as well as Danny. But that's the nature of football and next season we should have Andy Webster back. He has had a terrific season at Dundee United. In my opinion, he is a young Scottish defender up there with the best. He has had a bad run with injury and it's often harder mentally than physically to get over that so going out on loan this season has really helped him with that and I think we can benefit from that next season. I remember playing alongside him for Scotland, probably five years ago now, when he was coming through at Hearts and I think he was capable of going on and having a great career and now, having worked so hard to overcome everything he has been through, I think he will and, for that, he does deserve great plaudits.

Great read.


I remember I was nominated once when I was at Hearts but that was a hundred years ago!

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Talk about Captain Dignity. Now that's what you call an honest assessment of yourself and your team in general. I wouldn't disagree with what the big man says...No bullshit, just straight as an arrow.

If he is fit enough and feels he can do it all again next season, I hope he stays.

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I would like to play on for as long as I can, but for that to happen I have to be offered a contract.

I really hope he calls it quit at the end of this season. I would hate to see a Rangers great damage peoples memories of him by having a poor last season as he's definitely loosing his pace a bit now and can't quite rely on his good head to take him through another year. Would make a fantastic coach for the youngsters like Wilson though.

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