WES FODERINGHAM probably can’t even remember saying it but he actually nailed the most important issue affecting Rangers today.

And that is automatic promotion this season, in his own words, is not a given. Not anymore. Not unless Hibernian capitulate, which is never an impossibility, or Rangers add a bit of quality next month, which some would suggest is impossible.

The goalkeeper is a thoughtful sort and he was quite right to point that while he and his team-mates get paid more than the rest of the league, today’s opponents Raith Rovers can only dream of such wages, such a fiscal advantage only counts for so much.

Every team in the Championship works that bit harder when Rangers are in town or when they visit Ibrox. Rangers should finish first, but to make sure that becomes a certainty, Mark Warburton’s men have to really graft at places such as Stark’s Park with its slope.

“It is not a given we are going to get back into the Premiership,” said Foderingham. “We have to work hard to make sure we do win the Championship. We need to focus on that first and when we do get there we will experience some great games. I am sure the media hype around Rangers will increase if and when we get back to the Premiership. I am looking forward to it.

"On paper, as a massive club with a bigger budget, you would say we are expected to win the division. But football's not like that and you have to work hard for anything. It's not given to you. So far, we have done really well. We are at the top of the table and we look to continue that.”

Foderingham has now got his head around the reality that any dropped points is not good enough and that even some wins fall short of the standards required.

"Yeah, especially in the Championship where we are expected to win every game,” he said. “I’m sure the fans appreciate how hard we work. If we are not up to our usual standards, then they will voice their opinions and rightly so.

"It is up to us to maintain the high standards we have set and continue that way right until the finish. But if you are not performing well and losing games in the Championship, the fans are going to let us know. So it's about adjusting quickly, staying at the top of the table, getting promoted and then taking it from there.”

It is fair to assume that Foderingham never saw himself one day playing in the second tier of Scottish football. However, he has been pleasantly taken aback by the level, even if he can’t wait to get out of the league.

“Speaking personally, I was surprised by the standard when I came up here,” the goalkeeper said. “I didn’t think it was as good as it is. It is very decent. There are some big clubs up here and Rangers are one of those, so it is one of those opportunities you can’t turn down.

“Any football fan does know how big Rangers are. Personally, when I came up and had a look around the place, it was bigger than I thought. Until you do come here, I’m not sure you realise how big it is.

"You obviously want to play for Rangers in the Premiership and in the big games - Old Firm games as well. I think that's what everyone has come here for and I don't want to leave before that has happened.”

Against Alloa in midweek, Warburton showed his players that he has a nasty steak to him when the dressing room was told a few home truths.

The Rangers manager comes across as a nice bloke but they now know to expect a telling off when they have not impressed him.

“When things aren't right, then he is going let us know about it,” said Foderingham. “At half-time on Tuesday, the performance had not been up to our usual standards so he let us know.

"We came out in the second half, stepped it up a gear or two and went on to win the game. So it was a good team talk. He is very constructive with what he says. When he does lose his temper a little bit, it is because he wants us to do better. He knows we can do better.”

If Rangers can be better and work hard there will be little need for Warburton to lose his temper.