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Page last updated at 17:59 GMT, Saturday, 4 July 2009 18:59 UK

Weir not pondering his retirement

David Weir and Walter Smith
Smith (right) has relied heavily on Weir since the defender joined Rangers

Rangers defender David Weir refuses to accept he is entering the final year of his career as the 39-year-old prepares for his latest pre-season.

Weir will sign a one-year contract later this week when he returns to Murray Park following the summer break.

"Everybody has been telling me since I was 33 or 34 at Everton that this would be my final year," Weir told BBC Scotland's Sportsound programme.

"I have never put timescales on finishing my career."

The Scotland international initially joined Rangers on a short-term deal in January 2007 and has become a mainstay of Walter Smith's side.

He was handed the captaincy for the closing weeks of the season after Barry Ferguson was dropped from the first team for a breach of discipline.

Success followed with Rangers clinching the Scottish Premier League on the last day of the campaign and then securing a Scottish Cup final win over Falkirk.

The league triumph guaranteed Rangers direct entry into the group stages of the Champions League, something Weir is excited about.

"We're looking forward to it," he said. "You know when you go to that level of competition it's going to be very, very difficult and you're going to be playing against top-class teams with great players and you're going to be up against it.

"But we showed the last time, two years ago, that we're capable of competing in Europe and getting some good results and that's got to be the aim.

"It's a massive thing, but playing for Rangers in itself is enough for me. It's something I've enjoyed since the minute I started, but obviously winning the league and getting the guaranteed Champions League games is a massive bonus.

"We knew the enormity of it because Celtic had deservedly had success over the previous three years, so and it was such an important end to the season for us to finally come out on top - primarily it was a relief.

"As the weeks go by, you can start to enjoy it and appreciate what's actually happened."

Gordon Strachan is a massive loss for Celtic in my opinion because of the success that he did achieve

David Weir

Rangers have been inactive in the transfer market so far this summer, but Weir expects boss Smith to bring in some new faces ahead of the new campaign.

"We finished the season successfully and our team developed as the season went on, so I don't think the manager will be making too drastic changes," Weir said.

"But in football you're always fine tuning and trying to better yourself and better your team and I don't think the manager will be averse to doing that."

Across the city, Celtic have changed their management team with Tony Mowbray replacing Gordon Strachan at the helm.

"It'll obviously be a fresh challenge for us, but you've got to give Gordon Strachan great credit for what he achieved at Celtic in his time there," added Weir.

"It's a massive loss for Celtic in my opinion because of the success that he did achieve and what he did at the club both in Europe and in Scotland.

"That's the way football's going now. It seems to be 'if in doubt, change the manager'. There doesn't seem to be much breathing space or much stability.

"When you look at the teams that are successful year after year, they are the ones with the stability and the players and managers that have been there for a long time."

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see also
Weir poised for new Rangers deal
01 Jun 09 |  Rangers
Weir happy to share with Ferguson
25 May 09 |  Rangers
Weir undecided about management
31 Mar 09 |  Rangers

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