ALASTAIR JOHNSTON hopes the next manager of Rangers can follow the example set by Brendan Rodgers at Celtic and transform the fortunes of the misfiring Ibrox squad.

The Light Blues board have started their search for Pedro Caixinha’s replacement after his seven month tenure was brought to an end on Thursday afternoon.

Caixinha was heavily backed by the Gers hierarchy in the summer as he overhauled his squad by signing the likes of Bruno Alves, Carlos Pena and Eduardo Herrera.

Read more: Steven Thompson: Time up for Caixinha who never got the magnitude of Rangers job

And Johnston is eager to see the next man at the helm make an immediate impact and get more out of the current crop than Caixinha was able to in recent weeks.

He said: “There are financial implications but in the circumstances they had to be seconded, if you will, to the best interests of the club.

"My own view is that we have a better squad than people think and perhaps a new management team will get more out of them.

"A lot of Rangers fans thought the players we brought in during the summer were actually positive.

"I don't think we have seen the best of them and I would like to think that the new management team will be able to get more out of them.

"In many ways that's what Celtic did when they brought in Brendan Rodgers.

Read more: The end of a strange seven-month affair at Rangers as Dave King moves on from Pedro Caixinha​

"They had good players but they brought in a guy who got more out of their players.

"They didn't add too many players to their club but they got whole lot better results once they brought in Rodgers."

Rangers are eight points off the pace being set by their Old Firm rivals in the Premiership and five adrift of Aberdeen after they slipped to fourth in the standings on Wednesday night.

The 1-1 draw with Kilmarnock came just days after Caixinha’s side were beaten in the semi-finals of the Betfred Cup by Motherwell.

It has been a poor start to the campaign from the Gers and Johnston believes the right call has been made to sack Caixinha.

He said: "We had a board teleconference [on Thursday] morning and the decision was made.

Read more: The weird and wacky world of the caravan man: Pedro Caixinha's most memorable quotes at Rangers

"I don't think it was a fait accompli, there was a lot of sharing of opinions and viewpoints and lots of questions asked and answered.

"It wasn't a quick three minute call, let's put it that way.

"But the decision was obviously something that was under consideration for a while, we are not deaf and blind.

"I think the events of the last couple of weeks demonstrated institutional failure, if you will.

"It was a systemic problem and not just one we thought could be corrected easily with the current personnel.

"You can't not be disappointed after losing a manger after seven months but the board had to reach a decision which was in the best interests of the club in the long run and if a decision was going to be made it was better being made sooner rather than later."

Rangers return to Premiership action with a trip to Murrayfield to face Hearts on Saturday afternoon as they attempt to get back to winning ways.

Read more: Barry Ferguson: Next Rangers boss has to know the club inside out

And the search for Caixinha’s replacement is already underway as the Ibrox board look to ensure they get the right man for the job this time around.

Johnston said: "Since we appointed Pedro we have got a director of football in place and he will obviously have a responsibility that we didn't have before.

"The immediate plan is to go back to Graeme Murty which is the obvious thing to do at this stage while we evaluate the candidates and needless to say there will be a lot of people contacting us and there will be some people we will contact.

"Obviously you want to do this as soon as possible but obviously you want to get it right so I wouldn't want to have any conjecture about the time frame."