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Simply my best

By ROBERT GRIEVE

HE is the short-term solution who turned out to be the long-term conundrum.

Walter Smith can't work out how he's got almost four years out of a player he expected to have for six months.

All he knows for sure is Davie Weir is the best professional he's ever worked with.

The Rangers skipper could bow out of Ibrox on Sunday - the day before he turns 40.

Smith reckons whatever happens the veteran stopper must go down as the best player he's ever worked with in his career.

The gaffer said: "It is pretty remarkable considering Davie is 40 on Monday.

"He has been fantastic in the three and a half years he has been here.

"He has hardly missed a training session in that time. Davie is a credit to his profession. You read a lot about the more extravagant side of footballers, but he is one who is in it for the game.

"He loves his football, loves being involved, loves playing.

"I have always shied away from making comparisons between professionals, but with the way Davie has conducted himself and the way he has played, I think he is the best professional I have worked with.

"I thought he was coming here for six months and he is still here!

"I didn't make the decision to take him here feeling he would be here for three and a half years. I thought the four months between the January and the end of the season would be enough for him.

"It turns out to have been a terrific decision, but that is down to Davie rather than me.

"He has made it look as though it has been a terrific decision.

"He just does everything the right way. He has a knack of handling a situation in the right way, be it a contract negotiation or anything he has had to do as captain.

"Anything he has had to come to you with he approaches you in the right manner. He is excellent.

"He has that bit of toughness in him as well which is always required with any player.

"You speak to people who have been involved with Davie and they will say he is a great professional and a nice lad, but he has a toughness as well.

"Nobody will ever take advantage of him. Davie has a good way of getting his point across. Coaching or management, whatever he gets the chance to do, will be a natural progression for him.

"I think he sees himself doing that as well and he will be excellent at it."

Smith will lift the SPL trophy tomorrow and think back to the games when the title was won.

His finest moment? That came in the Co-op Cup Final when his side beat St Mirren with just nine men.

He said: "Winning the League Cup with nine men for the last half-hour was strange to say the least, standing at the side of the pitch trying to organise that.

"That was a terrific achievement considering St Mirren had been the better team with 11 men.

"That is one I will always remember.

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"For the league campaign I just sit down at times and marvel at the consistency of play we have had. We have had quite a number of ups and down and have created a number of terrific performances over the season.

"But that consistency is a very difficult thing for any team to achieve.

"The boys have worked extremely hard and got themselves into a situation where you always get the feeling they are never beaten.

"Even in the game at Celtic Park the other night we were the better team in the seond half - even though we had nothing to play for.

"We always have a good reaction to situations like that."

Smith has had to wait for the title trophy, but reckons his players deserve to enjoy their day of glory tomorrow.

He said: "It's a strange one, having to wait a couple of weeks to get the trophy. It will be nice to get it at last. This season our players have deserved it. You don't ever really win a championship without deserving it but this season they have been excellent in their overall approach.

"We haven't been able to celebrate properly, partly because we've had games.

"And there are also these other bits surrounding the club at the moment.

"Even a day after winning the title it's back to the same as it was before.

"Hopefully we will enjoy the game. But the celebration is something we look forward to."

Smith could lose six players in the summer. Veteran Weir is out of contract along with Kris Boyd, Stevie Smith, DaMarcus Beasley, Kirk Broadfoot and Nacho Novo.

Smith added: "We're in discussions with a number of players and that's something that will be ongoing.

"I expect that to last into next week, because there has been no agreement with any of them.

"We'd have liked everything to be settled by the end of the season, but it hasn't been possible.

"When you look at our boys in those circumstances, they have never been affected by anything going on with contract talks.

"It has never affected their play in any way yet they might have made the decision in their own heads to leave now.

"We've half a dozen of them in that situation and quite a few will take part in the game. I've no fears about playing them.

"They deserve a bit of praise for the manner in which they have handled themselves and they deserve a part in the celebrations.

HE is the short-term solution who turned out to be the long-term conundrum.

Walter Smith can't work out how he's got almost four years out of a player he expected to have for six months.

All he knows for sure is Davie Weir is the best professional he's ever worked with.

The Rangers skipper could bow out of Ibrox on Sunday - the day before he turns 40.

Smith reckons whatever happens the veteran stopper must go down as the best player he's ever worked with in his career.

The gaffer said: "It is pretty remarkable considering Davie is 40 on Monday.

"He has been fantastic in the three and a half years he has been here.

"He has hardly missed a training session in that time. Davie is a credit to his profession. You read a lot about the more extravagant side of footballers, but he is one who is in it for the game.

"He loves his football, loves being involved, loves playing.

"I have always shied away from making comparisons between professionals, but with the way Davie has conducted himself and the way he has played, I think he is the best professional I have worked with.

"I thought he was coming here for six months and he is still here!

"I didn't make the decision to take him here feeling he would be here for three and a half years. I thought the four months between the January and the end of the season would be enough for him.

"It turns out to have been a terrific decision, but that is down to Davie rather than me.

"He has made it look as though it has been a terrific decision.

"He just does everything the right way. He has a knack of handling a situation in the right way, be it a contract negotiation or anything he has had to do as captain.

"Anything he has had to come to you with he approaches you in the right manner. He is excellent.

"He has that bit of toughness in him as well which is always required with any player.

"You speak to people who have been involved with Davie and they will say he is a great professional and a nice lad, but he has a toughness as well.

"Nobody will ever take advantage of him. Davie has a good way of getting his point across. Coaching or management, whatever he gets the chance to do, will be a natural progression for him.

"I think he sees himself doing that as well and he will be excellent at it."

Smith will lift the SPL trophy tomorrow and think back to the games when the title was won.

His finest moment? That came in the Co-op Cup Final when his side beat St Mirren with just nine men.

He said: "Winning the League Cup with nine men for the last half-hour was strange to say the least, standing at the side of the pitch trying to organise that.

"That was a terrific achievement considering St Mirren had been the better team with 11 men.

"That is one I will always remember.

Advertisement

Click to learn more...Quantcast Quantcast

"For the league campaign I just sit down at times and marvel at the consistency of play we have had. We have had quite a number of ups and down and have created a number of terrific performances over the season.

"But that consistency is a very difficult thing for any team to achieve.

"The boys have worked extremely hard and got themselves into a situation where you always get the feeling they are never beaten.

"Even in the game at Celtic Park the other night we were the better team in the seond half - even though we had nothing to play for.

"We always have a good reaction to situations like that."

Smith has had to wait for the title trophy, but reckons his players deserve to enjoy their day of glory tomorrow.

He said: "It's a strange one, having to wait a couple of weeks to get the trophy. It will be nice to get it at last. This season our players have deserved it. You don't ever really win a championship without deserving it but this season they have been excellent in their overall approach.

"We haven't been able to celebrate properly, partly because we've had games.

"And there are also these other bits surrounding the club at the moment.

"Even a day after winning the title it's back to the same as it was before.

"Hopefully we will enjoy the game. But the celebration is something we look forward to."

Smith could lose six players in the summer. Veteran Weir is out of contract along with Kris Boyd, Stevie Smith, DaMarcus Beasley, Kirk Broadfoot and Nacho Novo.

Smith added: "We're in discussions with a number of players and that's something that will be ongoing.

"I expect that to last into next week, because there has been no agreement with any of them.

"We'd have liked everything to be settled by the end of the season, but it hasn't been possible.

"When you look at our boys in those circumstances, they have never been affected by anything going on with contract talks.

"It has never affected their play in any way yet they might have made the decision in their own heads to leave now.

"We've half a dozen of them in that situation and quite a few will take part in the game. I've no fears about playing them.

"They deserve a bit of praise for the manner in which they have handled themselves and they deserve a part in the celebrations.

Read more: http://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/scotsol/homepage/sport/spl/2964689/Simply-my-best.html#ixzz0nHpRFIAh

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Weir will be overjoyed with this.

My mate was at Inverclyde once and Davie was there doing his coaching badges.

Anyway, he asked my mate to have a quick glance on his paper and Walter was on the back; Davie then said: "That guy is a legend."

:praise:

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There is no doubt that in years down the road from now, Davie Weir will attain the same status as Struth,Meiklejohn,Morton,Cox,Baxter et al, who became part of the folklore at Rangers F.C.

From little Acorns grow mighty Oaks.:praise::clap::21:

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