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Page last updated at 15:39 GMT, Saturday, 19 June 2010 16:39 UK

Ally McCoist hails Madjid Bougherra's World Cup display

Wayne Rooney resorts to pulling Madjid Bougherra's shirt
Rooney had a poor game while being marked by Bougherra on Friday

Ally McCoist has praised Madjid Bougherra for the way the Rangers defender handled Wayne Rooney and Emile Heskey for Algeria on Friday.

The Rangers assistant manager was a television pundit as Algeria drew 0-0 with England in World Cup Group C.

"A couple of times Rooney and Heskey tried to take him on physically. They would probably win that battle against 95% of defenders at the World Cup.

"But Boughie is a big unit," McCoist told BBC Scotland.

"He is a big lad and you don't push him about or knock him off the ball and he certainly stood up to the aggression of Heskey and Rooney and I thought Bougherra played very well.

"I thought Bougherra, Belhadj on the left-hand side and the lad up front Ziani were very, very good.

"All the good players from the game were Algerian."

McCoist, though, had sympathy for his English colleagues on the commentary team and Fabio Capello's side.

"Make no mistake about it, they are really struggling," said the former Scotland striker. "I watched the first game against USA and they did alright.

"I thought they were the better team against the USA and you can't legislate for a goalkeeping howler that cost them two points.

"But I was at the game in Cape Town against Algeria and they were really poor. They look scared actually, as if they are playing with a little bit of fear."

McCoist is using the trip to scout for talent now that Rangers have been allowed by their bankers to spend money to improve their squad for the first time in nearly two years.

However, he stressed that the Scottish champions were still having to operate in the bargain basement.

"I have been watching all the games, but I am looking at teams like Australia, New Zealand, Honduras and teams like that to see if there is anything knocking about," said McCoist.

"I am not saying we don't have anything to spend, but any money we do get, we will have to spend very, very wisely."

Rangers assistant manager Ally McCoist
McCoist is sending home reports on potential signing targets

While McCoist has been in South Africa, Rangers owner Sir David Murray has taken the Glasgow club off the market after a viable takeover failed to materialise.

"I had a hunch that the way things were going. Well, nothing was going, there was no movement," he said.

"There was supposed interest. It was all talk effectively and I think the ex-chairman just probably had enough and said, 'right, if nobody's going to come in and make us an acceptable offer then we'll just take the club off the market'. So I would not say it was a massive surprise to me."

Walter Smith has agreed to remain as manager for a final season, with the plan being to hand over the reins to McCoist next summer and the present assistant was happy that the status quo prevailed.

"The one thing about the owner and ex-chairman, I don't think anyone can deny his love for the club and his desire for the club to do well," said McCoist.

"He has been at the helm for a good number of years and, although he isn't chairman any more, nobody can argue that he hasn't got the club's best interests at heart."

However, McCoist is not taking his inheritance for granted.

"I am realistic enough to know that a year's a long time in football," he said. "Without doubt, it would be the biggest honour that I could ever get or ever want.

"To play for the club you supported as a kid is one thing; to be there as a player for 15 years and then come back as a coach and assistant manager is fantastic and beyond most people's wildest dreams.

"But to actually become manager would be absolutely outrageous."



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see also
BBC pundits on England
18 Jun 10 |  World Cup 2010
England display confuses Capello
19 Jun 10 |  World Cup 2010
'Business as usual' - Gers chief
17 Jun 10 |  Rangers
Club no longer for sale - Rangers
15 Jun 10 |  Rangers
Smith aims to replace strike duo
05 Jun 10 |  Rangers
McCoist thrilled with future role
26 May 10 |  Rangers
Rangers promise funds for Smith
26 May 10 |  Rangers
Rangers keep Smith for final year
25 May 10 |  Rangers


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