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McCoist: it'll take Rangers five years to challenge Celtic's Scottish football dominance

Rangers boss Ally McCoist has backed Graham Wallace's claim that it might take the Ibrox outfit another five years to start challenging Celtic's dominance of the Scottish game.

On Thursday, Gers chief executive Wallace told delegates from the club's three main fan groups - the Rangers Supporters Assembly, the Rangers Supporters Trust and the Rangers Supporters Association - that he wants to draw up a five-year plan aimed at reining in the Hoops as well as targeting a return to European action.

The former Manchester City chief operating officer's comments come just two weeks after the Light Blues squad knocked back his suggestion of a 15 per cent pay cut.

That sparked fears of an Ibrox fire sale but former oldco director Dave King has urged the club - understood to be losing around £1million a month - to find new investment now so McCoist's side can launch an immediate fight for the title as soon as they return to the Scottish Premiership.

The manager, however, has given his approval to the Wallace timetable, saying: "I would have thought that was about fair, yeah. I would agree with Graham there.

"He has been completely honest with everybody and if he said a five-year plan has been put in operation then I think we should respect that."

And McCoist - whose side take on Brechin at Ibrox on Saturday looking to consolidate their 23-point lead at the top of League One - claims his side may even struggle to gain promotion back to the top-flight at the first attempt.

"I don't have us down as any guarantees to be back in the Premiership next year, assuming we win promotion this year," he said.

"Hearts are a good side and if we look at the top of the Championship now, there are Dundee, Falkirk and Hamilton doing very well.

"So if we are lucky enough to go up this year, there are no guarantees - absolutely no guarantees - that we will do the same next season. We will just have to take it one step at a time."

Wallace also told the fans groups he hoped to set up a "supporter committee" to represent their views in discussions with the Ibrox hierarchy, another idea which McCoist gave the thumbs up to.

"Without doubt, the greatest thing that has come out of this sad saga at the club of the last couple of years has been the support of the fans," he said.

"The very least they deserve is a voice to be heard from the board and from within the club, so I'd be all for that."

Wallace is currently undertaking a 120-day study of the club as he seeks to solve the financial woes dragging it down.

And the manager claimed the early signs of the 52-year-old's leadership were encouraging.

McCoist said: "The chief executive has been nothing but completely honest and up front with me. I really am enjoying the early stages of the working relationship with Graham.

"We meet at least one or twice a week and speak a couple of times on the phone daily, which I think is very important.

"We both firmly believe the most important relationship at the club is between the chief executive and the manager. I have to say, like the vast majority of people in the media and the fans, we have been impressed with the early dealings Graham has done with the club."

Meanwhile, Lewis Macleod will miss Rangers' League One clash with Brechin at Ibrox on Saturday after being set for tests on a troublesome calf strain.

The muscle injury has inhibited the midfielder for the past few weeks and boss Ally McCoist has sent the 19-year-old to see a specialist in a bid to solve the problem.

However, Nicky Clark (foot), Chris Hegarty (ankle), Kyle Hutton (broken leg) and Ross Perry (ankle) all remain on the sidelines with long-term issues.

Provisional squad: Bell, Foster, Wallace, McCulloch, Faure, Law, Little, Peralta, Black, Crawford, Aird, Daly, Simonsen, Murdoch, Shiels, Cribari, Mohsni, Templeton, Telfer.Ends

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