A group of Rangers shareholders have mounted a bid to oust chairman Malcolm Murray from the club along with non-executive director Philip Cartmell as the ongoing power struggle at Ibrox deepens.

The shareholders have begun the process of calling an extraordinary general meeting to force the exit of both men.

Motions for the EGM are to include the appointment of two new directors, James Easdale and Chris Morgan.

Mr Easdale owns McGill's buses with his brother Sandy, while Mr Morgan was named by Charles Green last year as part of his original consortium that bought the club. He is described as "a UK-based businessman representing family trusts".

Today Rangers confirmed that they have received a request to hold an extraordinary general meeting designed to oust Murray.

The club this morning issued a statement to the London Stock Exchange confirming that they were considering the request.

The statement read: "The board of Rangers has noted the recent press speculation regarding a requisition for a General Meeting.

"The board confirms that it has received such correspondence and is seeking to establish the validity of this requisition.

"Further announcements will be made as appropriate."

The club later attempted to assure fans that they were "working tirelessly to keep the club on the right course".

A second statement added: "It is vital Rangers continues to progress and no matter how many distractions or obstacles are placed in our way, the directors are determined to meet all challenges.

"The most important people in all of this are the supporters, the team, the staff and the management.

"Rangers' fans deserve to know that the board will not be prevented from doing everything necessary to protect this club for them."

Several directors, and many of the club's supporters, will be troubled by the prospect of having two new board members.

Sandy Easdale served 18 months in jail after being convicted of VAT fraud in 1996, and several Rangers directors were adamant they would not allow James Easdale on to the board when Mr Green informed them he would be selling his stake in the club to the brothers when his share lock-in period ends in December.

Mr Morgan is also a former non- executive director of Nova Resources, a company with mining interests in Mongolia, of which Mr Green was once chairman.

Mr Murray has already been the subject of a vote of no confidence among the directors, although there was anger among some of the board members that Mr Green contributed to that vote despite having resigned his position as chief executive. Mr Green does, though, remain a director until the end of May.

The requisitioning of the EGM requires the support of 10% of the shareholders and, once validated, the board of directors has 21 days in which to circulate details of the EGM motions to all shareholders, then set the date for the EGM within 28 days of the notice. Mr Green currently holds 7.8% of the shares and Imran Ahmad, who left his position as commercial director last month, has a 3.4% stake.

Mr Murray clashed with Mr Green on several occasions, and the chairman also pushed for the independent inquiry – by the law firm Pinsent Masons and the accountants Deloitte – into Craig Whyte's assertion that he has a legal claim on the assets of the club after colluding with Mr Green and Mr Ahmad last summer.

Although all the directors agreed on the vote of no confidence in Mr Murray, some were reluctant. Calling the EGM appears to be a bid to force the matter to a conclusion.

It may also be a ploy to lever bids from either of the interested parties who are considering buying significant shareholdings in the club to take a controlling interest.

Former director Dave King is monitoring proceedings, while at least one other interested party is doing the same.

The independent examination could deliver its findings as early as next week, but Rangers remains in a state of uncertainty.

There are questions over how much of the money raised in the launch on the Alternative Investment Market last December remains and questions over the true financial position at Ibrox.

Mr Green always claimed that Mr Whyte was not involved in his consortium, but has since conceded that he and Mr Ahmad colluded with the former Rangers owner as they sought to buy his shares last summer in the event of Rangers Football Club plc gaining a Company Voluntary Arrangement to come out of administration.

Mr Whyte claims that he was a founder and director of Sevco 5088, the company that was named the exclusive bidder by Duff & Phelps, the administrators, last summer.

However, RFC plc was liquidated, and the club, business and assets were sold to Sevco Scotland.

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