THE search for clear, blue water goes on as storms continue to assail Rangers.

It is likely, however, that Malcolm Murray will be thrown overboard as the club hopes to lurch from another crisis towards safer havens. The burden of chill reality continues to batter the club.

Murray was last night clinging on to his post as chairman with Philip Cartmell, a non-executive director, also believed to be in peril. It is believed that an extraordinary general meeting may not be required to effect the removal of Murray, whose situation is hazardous despite support from city investors. His fate was described by one source as unavoidable. "He has to go. Too many see him as a liability," he said. The upheaval at Ibrox was described last night by a city source, sympathetic towards Murray, as "mud wrestling" and "everyone is going to be covered in it".

The departure of Murray is seen as sad but inevitable even among those at the club who are kindly disposed towards him.

Turmoil is thus assured – whether he goes or survives – with Rangers facing a highly critical period. Murray's position is defended by investors who believe he knows the workings of the City, has an interest in the long-term future of the club and was an integral part of the pitch to potential shareholders.

Unfortunately for him, moves to remove him are not just driven by Charles Green, the former chief executive with whom he has had a volatile relationship, but by other elements on the board who have become frustrated at his failure to provide leadership and direction. This is particularly important when a board has so many differing factions and has the added problems of interference from outside.

Broadly, Murray is largely isolated and faces such as Walter Smith, increasingly disillusioned by what he has walked into, Green, who leaves his directorship soon but has a large shareholding, and former owner Craig Whyte, whose presence may be as insubstantial as his claims but who has still the capacity to cause severe mischief.

If Murray goes, then the theory is that James Easdale, co-owner of McGill's buses, and Chris Morgan, who has links with Green, will be brought on board. The "fit and proper person test" may then kick in both officially and unofficially. For example, if Green is linked to Whyte, then Morgan may be unacceptable to both the Scottish Football Association and the fans.

The board is also split on how to proceed. There has to be cost-cutting at Ibrox. This is easier for some to accept than implement. However, cash flow at Ibrox has been a trickle all season after the input of season ticket money. This is a club with a huge stadium to maintain and a top-class training facility to run. It also has a substantial wage bill. The figure of £10m or less is generally the one used to described the remnants of the £22m gained through the share offer.

This haemorrhaging of money cannot continue without funds being replenished by a wave of season-ticket money or by new investment. Both these avenues are obstructed by what is continuing to happen at Ibrox. The fans are keeping their hands in their pockets, wary of the fall-out from the fall outs. The Whyte connection is toxic to hopes of selling season tickets and although at least one prospective bidder and many inside Ibrox believe his claims have no merit, the one-time owner of Rangers still has the power to cast a cloud over the club. Some bidders for the club also want it to be clearly shown that Whyte has no claim on the assets before launching any bid for ownership.

Thus the clear, blue water for Rangers needs Whyte to be painted out of the picture permanently. There is an argument the liquidation of Rangers ended his claims and that all further business involves him and Green on a personal, not Rangers, basis. Whatever way this deal is sliced, Whyte has to be clearly and obviously out of the Rangers equation.

The next step is to end the board wrangling. This will be difficult, given the competing motivations of its members, with some keen on realising a return on investment quickly. The fight for control at Ibrox is in some ways a misnomer because there is a sense that no one is in control at the moment. Rangers desperately need a strong figure whose probity would not be questioned by financial or football institutions. This has to be a personality who can calm the City investors while not causing concern at the SFA. These figures are in short supply and will not be easily lured into the mayhem that reigns at Ibrox 2013.

Without that strong, purposeful character, Rangers can not address the problems that are most crucial to the existence of the club. One of the key issues dividing the board is the pace of cuts that have to be undertaken. The true blue corner will want to protect as many of the staff as possible and to help those they know at the club. However, the reality is that the outgoings are unsustainable and may be ruinous if season ticket money falters.

The boardroom fight at Ibrox has been depicted as one for the "heart and soul" of the club but its very fabric is under threat unless both a peace is achieved and a viable way forward is charted.