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Smith must sign 'productive' players for Rangers

Rangers manager Walter Smith in Sydney
Smith enters his final year at Rangers in trying circumstances

Rangers manager Walter Smith admits that, with a limited budget at his disposal, his choice of player in the transfer market has to be correct.

"In the past in this situation, we've signed a lot of players who haven't worked out," said Smith after his team beat Blackburn 2-1 in Sydney on Sunday.

"If we're going to bring a player in, he's going to be productive."

Smith hopes to add three players to his squad, having lost six, including Kris Boyd, Kevin Thomson and Danny Wilson.

Middlesbrough was the destination for striker Boyd and midfielder Thomson, and Liverpool for centre-half Wilson, while left-back Stevie Smith left for Norwich.

In addition, Smith must make do without the services of forwards Nacho Novo and DaMarcus Beasley in his last campaign as Rangers manager.

"I don't want to be bringing someone in then a year later be paying off his contract," added Smith, 62.

"It's awkward because we only have a bit of money and we need three more players. I need to try to get a couple of players in wider areas, and maybe a striker."

The problem for Smith with his signing targets is matching the club's asking price and the player's wage demands.

Kenny Miller scores Rangers' second in their 2-1 win over Blackburn
Miller scores Rangers' second in their 2-1 win over Blackburn

Rangers had a bid of around £2m accepted for Burnley winger Chris Eagles, but could not provide the former Manchester United player with a pay packet to his liking.

Smith said: "We have tried to get a few. Chris Eagles was the more public one but we've tried a few and they haven't worked out - not always over money.

"Obviously when you're going for a better level of player, money is a part of it, but when you're limited like we are you have to balance it by trying to get three players.

"For instance, we were taking a chance on Eagles because he would have taken up most of what we had, and I'd then have had to maybe get another couple on loan. But I felt he was worth trying to do that for."

Smith's last foray into the transfer market, in August 2008, resulted in the arrival of Maurice Edu moving to Ibrox.

And the American international midfielder was on the scoresheet in Australia as Rangers beat Blackburn in the Sydney Festival of Football.

Edu and Kenny Miller scored first-half goals for Rangers but were pegged back by a David Dunn penalty after the break.

It is not my position so it was quite a new experience for me

Madjid Bougherra on facing Blackburn at right-back

Rangers play Australian A-League champions Sydney on Wednesday then take on AEK Athens in their final match on Saturday, and Madjid Bougherra believes the games Down Under should prepare the team well for Europe.

The Algerian, who played at right-back against the English side, told the Rangers' website : "It was good for us to win because we were playing against a Premier League team and I think we did well.

"It is good for us to be playing such different sides because it will help us to get ready for the Champions League.

"I think it is beneficial for us to go away to a place such as this and play different sorts of teams because it gives us a platform for the future."

And on his deployment at full-back, he added: "People think I play right-back for Algeria but I actually play on the right side of a three-man defence.

"The position I played today was completely different but it was the coach's decision to play me there. "If he tells me that's where he wants me, that's what I will do. It is not my position so it was quite a new experience for me."

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see also
Davis eyes middle man Rangers job
25 Jul 10 |  Rangers
McGregor vies for Scotland jersey
24 Jul 10 |  Rangers
Wilson seals switch to Liverpool
21 Jul 10 |  Liverpool
Smith frets over Rangers injuries
20 Jul 10 |  Rangers
Youth will get a chance - Smith
18 Jul 10 |  Rangers
Ibrox exodus
21 Jul 10 |  Rangers

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