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Page last updated at 12:12 GMT, Saturday, 19 July 2008 13:12 UK

Weir is stand-in Rangers captain

Rangers defender David Weir
David Weir will lead Rangers while Barry Ferguson is injured

Rangers manager Walter Smith has appointed David Weir as captain while Barry Ferguson makes his recovery from ankle surgery.

The 38-year-old defender will lead the Ibrox club on the field with the midfielder expected to be out for the first few months of the campaign.

Smith said: "David Weir will captain the team while Barry Ferguson is injured. He has it done it before.

"Nobody deserves it more than big Davie for the way he conducts himself."

The Ibrox manager is looking ahead to the forthcoming season and expects to see more from midfielder Kevin Thomson and the versatile Steven Whittaker.

Both former Hibernian players are settled into the club now and Smith hopes that is mirrored in their play.

Kevin Thomson can move forward and be a terrific and important player for us this season

Rangers manager Walter Smith

"Not just because Barry is injured, but I think in terms of his own progression, Kevin can move forward and be a terrific and important player for us this season, " said the manager.

"It always takes a bit of time to make the transition from, for example, Hibs to Rangers and settle in.

"I think he did that last season, when he played exceptionally well in parts from us.

"This season I am looking for more maturity and consistency in his play.

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"He is ready for that and Steven Whittaker is exactly the same; I hope he, too, can come to the fore a bit more.

"Lee McCulloch is another in that bracket. He is slightly more experienced, but he has had that year behind him now and is also quite adaptable.

"He is another who will have an influence this season, I have no doubt about that."


see also
Rangers boss wants to keep Boyd
18 Jul 08 |  Rangers
Veteran duo seal new Ibrox deals
03 Jul 08 |  Rangers
Cardiff chief asks for patience
15 Jul 08 |  Cardiff
Cardiff preparing fresh Boyd bid
21 Jun 08 |  Rangers
Boyd wants to stay with Rangers
27 May 08 |  Rangers


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