GRAEME Souness will not be involved with Rangers in any official capacity going forward after failing to reach agreement on a prospective consultancy role with the current hierarchy of the Ibrox club.

“That’s been and gone,” he said at a Viaplay media event at Hampden yesterday to promote the satellite broadcaster’s coverage of the Scottish Gas Scottish Cup quarter-finals this weekend. “We spoke about it, but it’s not going to happen. I’m not going to enlarge on it.”

Yet, Souness, who was expected to accept the offer of a formal position after being drafted in to help interview managerial candidates when Michael Beale was sacked last year, is convinced the Glasgow giants will continue to head in the right direction without his input.

The Scotland great, whose arrival in Govan in the summer of 1986 sparked a revival after years of disappointment and failure, has been taken aback by how Philippe Clement has fared since being appointed back in October.

He warned the Belgian, who had spent successful spells in the dugout at Waasland-Beveren, Genk, Club Brugge and Monaco before moving to this country, that nothing will have prepared him for life in the Rangers hotseat when they spoke.

But he has been pleased to see Clement, who he met up with again at a supporters’ event at the Armadillo on Sunday, flourish at home and abroad since and feels the shock defeat to Motherwell at home on Sunday is simply the sort of slip-up which is to be expected in the closing straight of a title race.

“When I was talking to him I said to him, ‘This job is like nothing else’,” he said. “I am Scottish, I had been to Ibrox maybe eight times when I was a kid, I had played for Scotland, I had played for big football clubs. But nothing in that prepared me for being manager of Rangers. It is unique job which brings unique challenges.

“You are expected to win every game. I have since had that at Galatasaray, Benfica and Liverpool. I have lived with that. But it was a shock to me. Drawing a game can be a bit of a disaster in some people’s eyes. I explained that to him. I said, ‘If you get it right, it will be the best job you have ever had. On the downside, if it doesn’t go well you might be looking at it as the worst job’.

“That is the demand of being a Rangers manager. It is win at all costs, you have just got to win. There is no finishing second in May and saying, ‘We have had a good season’. That is not a good season in the eyes of the supporters. I got that pretty quickly.”

The Herald: Souness added: “But he has been fantastic. He is getting a very different tune out of players who were struggling a bit. I saw them playing against Aberdeen when they lost at home when Michael Beale was the manager. You were thinking, ‘Whoever gets the job has got a job on his hands’.

“But he has done what you are asked to do as a new manager. You can’t come in and change everything right away, but you are looking to get a different tune out of them and he has certainly done that.

“I didn’t appoint him. I was like everyone else at the interview process. But he was very impressive. He is an impressive character. He has just got a very impressive way with him.

“He can hold a room. When I am listening to a manager speak, I always take myself back to when I was a player. I think, ‘If I am in the dressing room am I going to listen to him or not?’ That was certainly the case when we were interviewing. I thought, ‘This is a man I would listen to’.”

Souness appreciates that football has changed enormously since he was manager at Rangers and understands that it is far more difficult for the Ibrox club to land quality footballers because of the money which is available down south and across the continent.

Still, he firmly believes that Clement has improved the players he inherited and recruited well and is more than capable of emulating his feat and winning the Premiership in his debut campaign.

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“His job is far harder than the one I had,” he said. “I had a budget to work with. We had as much money as all the clubs in England at the time. They were banned from Europe. We were a wealthy club and we could compete.

“What a statement it was bringing in the current England captain in Terry Butcher. That was the catalyst for everything we did. Man United and Spurs wanted him and we got him. Everything after that made it very easy for me when I was targeting players and trying to convince them to come to Glasgow.

“But I think he has got a great chance. It was a big weekend, an unusual weekend with both Rangers and Celtic losing. But what I would say is that Celtic saw the Rangers result on the Saturday and they would have been right up for Sunday’s game. And they have not done it, they have lost. Okay, they got a player sent off, but they have lost.

“That was a double whammy for them. They saw their biggest rivals had lost and they couldn’t capitalise on it. If there was a game where they had to be bang at it it would have been at Tynecastle on Sunday and they haven’t done it for whatever reason.

“But there is still a lot of football, both will drop points. There are nine games left and there will be another disasters for someone if not for both of them between now and the end of the season.

“Philippe is a very level minded individual. He is a modern manager. This is why I would not last one day in management today. When I look at all the managers working today, I think they are all the same. No one has an angry head anymore. They are calm.”

The Herald: Rangers moved above Celtic in the Premiership for the first time in two years when they beat St Johnstone in Perth last month and Souness is intrigued to see how the defending champions, who passed up the chance to reclaim first place when they lost to Hearts at Tynecastle on Sunday, cope with going from being the hunted to the hunters. 

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“What I found when I was here, was that we could be second in the league and playing the best football, better than Celtic, but because we were second all the focus and criticism was on us,” he said. “The team that’s first sails off into the sunset, everything is fabulous.

“It’s how you deal with it. And Rangers have dealt with it. Now it’s Celtic’s turn to deal with it. Let’s see how they deal with it. They’ll be getting the focus. You guys will be writing some things that are not terribly complimentary, people on radio will be saying things, pundits on television will be saying things.

“How will they deal with it? You have to be a big player to play for the Old Firm. You have to have big b******s. Can you write that?”

Graeme Souness was promoting Viaplay’s live and exclusive coverage of Hibernian v Rangers on Sunday. Viaplay is available to stream from or via your TV provider on Sky, Virgin TV and Amazon Prime as an add-on subscription.