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Cost cutting on agenda for McCoist in new year

Ally McCoist will meet the Rangers chief executive Graham Wallace during the first weeks of the new year to begin the process of evaluating the club's football resources.

The expectation is that the first-team squad will need to be reduced in size, and the manager will play a role in assessing the merits of his players and devising a strategy that will ensure that results are maintained.

Wallace has made it clear that the cost base at Ibrox is too large in comparison to revenue streams. A streamlining process is necessary, and every aspect of the business is being reviewed as the chief executive seeks to implement a five-year plan to bring stability to the club but also allow the team to achieve its ambition of returning to the top flight.

There are a number of fringe players, such as Emilson Cribari, who are likely to be encouraged to find a new club. Wallace said he wants to devise a football player asset strategy with the manager - essentially an evalu­ation of the current squad.

Nine players arrived as free agents last summer, and only Lee McCulloch, Ian Black and Lewis Macleod of the regular starting line-up were significant contributors to last season's title win, but McCoist does not expect the same kind of turnover to happen again.

"I'm not scheduled to meet the chief executive until early next year so I will have a better idea after that," said McCoist of potential player movement during next month's transfer window. "I'm not sure that will be the case [that last summer's upheaval will be seen again], possibly due to the finances. But, once I speak to the chief executive, I'll have a better indication of where we are on that matter.

"Contrary to the performance against Stranraer [on Boxing Day], we have been delighted with the progress made over this year. The transformation has been quite incredible but it is going to have to be equally incredible to keep going and moving up the leagues. Everyone can see the improvement in performances from last season, but it has to continue. There has to be an ongoing transformation moving up the leagues."

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