Ally McCoist Should Have Legendary Legacy At Rangers

Ally McCoist & Walter Smith

Sometimes it’s better to reflect on things when time has passed and the wounds aren’t so raw.

Without doubt Ally McCoist’s time as Rangers manager needed to come to an end last season. Today it has been confirmed that the former boss has reached a settlement with the club.

Late in 2014, it was announced that McCoist had handed in his resignation and was going to see out a twelve month notice period. By the end of the month he was relieved of his duties and was sent away on gardening leave.

By that time, Rangers had fallen away from Hearts for the Scottish Championship title race. The squad were void of any confidence or inspiration.

The fans had become restless with McCoist and his turgid one dimensional tactics. Critics were also critical of Ally’s transfer methods and lack of a ‘Plan B’ to change a game.

But now with the Gers team flying high under new boss Mark Warburton, I think it’s the right time to remember Ally McCoist and the terrific servant he was for the Govan club.

First off he was a tremendous striker.

For me, Scotland hasn’t had a better striker in my era.

In the early nineties ‘Super Ally’ would win Europe’s golden boot award two years running. By the end of his Ibrox run, he had bagged nine league titles, one Scottish Cup and nine League Cup final triumphs.

He was one of the mainstays in the famous team that helped the light blues to nine in a row. No one has scored more Old Firm goals than McCoist.

At the end of his playing career with the Gers, Ally McCoist was the clubs all-time top scorer with 355 strikes.

Ally would become a TV personality and pundit after his retirement. But he left that lucrative career to comeback to Ibrox and reunite with manager Walter Smith as his number two in January 2007.

The duo came to the clubs rescue after a poor period under Paul Le Guen’s management of the side.

During that time McCoist was a perfect assistant who provided a bond between the players and the managerial team and was also the perfect motivator. Under that role McCoist would help the side to another three league titles, two Scottish Cups and three league cups. He also helped guide the Glasgow giants to a UEFA Cup final, in which they lost out to Zenit St Petersburg.

When it became clear that Walter wasn’t going to renew his contract beyond 2011, it seemed only natural that Alistair Murdoch McCoist would become the teams new manager.

His stint in charge of the club actually started off pretty well (although Rangers were poor in every cup competition) and at one stage they were leading Celtic by fifteen points in the SPL. It was widely reported that Celtic boss Neil Lennon was just 45 minutes away from getting the sack that season.

But then things went terribly wrong for the blue half of Glasgow.

Celtic were galvanised under Lennon and clawed back the deficit before replacing Gers at the top. Then it was announced by relatively new owner Craig Whyte that Rangers had to enter administration.

The club was plunged into its darkest hour and struggled to reach the end of the season. McCoist stood by his players and became the supporters biggest supporter!

By the summer of 2012 the Rangers company were liquidated and the club found themselves in the bottom tier of Scottish football.

Again McCoist faced up to adversity and carried on as the Gers boss. He would find a whole new squad within a few weeks and that side would go on to win the old Third Division. The team would then go unbeaten as they raced to another title in League One.

But even at that stage, Rangers fans were questioning Ally’s managerial pedigree. The signings showed little imagination and the tactics were rigid and old fashioned.

In the Championship everything came unstuck and McCoist’s reign came to a natural, unimpressive end.

But be in no doubt, McCoist continually had one hand tied behind his back. The boardroom regimes he worked under at Ibrox seemed to undermine him at every turn and they proved to be a constant distraction.

At times Ally was more a political statesman rather than a football manager. McCoist had to field questions not only about his team on the pitch but about the motivations behind messrs Whyte, Green and Easdale. In that resect he had to be diplomatic and always put the club first!

When it came to running the club, yes he had a high player budget and a very decent wage himself but he also took various pay cuts and worked with no scouting network.

Legendary football manager Sir Alex Ferguson was full of praise when discussing Ally McCoist the manager:

“There was a lot of criticism pointed towards Ally McCoist during his time at Rangers.”

“You know something, I thought Ally McCoist did a fantastic job under undue pressure and no-one, unless they have been in that position, knows exactly how hard it was.”

A courtroom drama staring the club and previous board regimes looks likely to take place in the future. I truly expect McCoist to take the stand and once more fight in the interests of Rangers Football Club.

To be honest Ally wasn’t the greatest ever Gers boss but that doesn’t change the fact he should always be remembered as one of the clubs best servants as a prolific player, an iconic ambassador and a loyal supporter!


2 Responses to “Ally McCoist Should Have Legendary Legacy At Rangers”

  1. Brilliant article. Well said and so welcome to hear some positivity about Ally as there has been far too much negativity about a club legend.

  2. Ally McCoist is and always will be a legend, he always had Rangers interests at heart! watp!

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