ALLY McCOIST had been considering resigning from his post as Rangers manager for "a good considerable time" before he handed in his notice last week, but still plans on seeing out the remainder of his 12-month contract.

McCoist admitted the decision to quit as manager, that became public just hours before the team's 2-0 defeat to Queen of the South eight days ago, had been one of the hardest he has ever had to make, but admitted it still came as a "sense of relief" after enduring three years of ongoing turmoil at the beleaguered Ibrox club.

McCoist, who was unsure whether he would attend Monday's annual general meeting, revealed he could not envisage managing another club in Scotland in future but hoped to continue in football in some capacity once he had left Rangers.

He had met with Derek Llambias, installed yesterday as Rangers' new chief executive, and Sandy Easdale, chairman of the of football board, on Wednesday, but dismissed the suggestion that the purpose of that gathering had been to discuss a pay-off that would have brought an immediate end to his time as manager.

"I went into the meeting on Wednesday looking to discuss me handing in my notice," he said. "But at no time did I think I wouldn't be walking out it as Rangers manager. I was expecting to walk out of it as Rangers manager for the next 12 months and that's the case."

McCoist, though, admitted a burden had been lifted from him following his decision to resign."I have got to be truthful and say that once I made the decision there was a sense of relief there," he added.

"I have made a decision that I won't be here in a year. That is the best way to put it. I'm fully expecting to be here for the year I have to tell you. But the way I felt after I made the decision effectively was relief in the knowledge that in a year I won't be here.

"I think the last three years or so have certainly been taxing and difficult at times. So there's probably relief that I will definitely be able to spend time with my family and things like that - do things that I want to do myself. [I had been thinking about it for] a good considerable time. For weeks. It was a harder decision than the one to take the job, that's for sure."

The Rangers manager traditionally forms part of the top table at the club's AGM but McCoist was uncertain whether he would be in attendance.

"I addressed [the shareholders] last year but I'm not even sure I'm going on Monday, to be honest with you," he added. "That's something we've yet to discuss. I'm more than willing to be there but if I'm not there it won't be for any sinister reasons.

"If I'm asked to be there and I'm asked to speak then I certainly shall. I've not given it an awful lot of thought."