Michael Beale defends Rangers sporting director Ross Wilson after fan protest

Michael Beale tells protesting fans about Ross Wilson's virtues (Robert Perry/PA) (PA Wire)

Michael Beale tells protesting fans about Ross Wilson’s virtues (Robert Perry/PA) (PA Wire)

Michael Beale praised Ross Wilson’s virtues after another protest by Rangers fans against the Ibrox club’s sporting director.

Ahead of the Premiership’s 4-2 win over Motherwell at Fir Park, away fans held up banners with the faces of Wilson and managing director Stewart Robertson crossed out next to the phrase ‘time for a change’ – continuing a theme in a series support the Gers this season.

Goals from James Tavernier, Fashion Sakala, Todd Cantwell and Malik Tillman were enough to earn the three points, with Kevin van Veen and Bevis Mugabe scoring for the home side, who saw Callum Slattery in the 76th minute for a second yellow card off the field put .

And after his side’s win, former Rangers assistant coach Beale, who has lost once in 19 games since returning to the club to take over as coach from Giovanni van Bronckhorst in November, spoke positively about Wilson.

He said: “I’ve always worked well with Ross. He walked in when I was at the club before and he was influential in bringing me back.

“We work fantastically together every day. He’s a 24/7 footballer, much like me, so we have the same energy.

“We work and look at the players. We both determine the atmosphere on the training ground. We are the two main characters there.

“I understand the fans’ frustration but they don’t know everything that’s going on and the work that’s being done at the club.

“I understand they pay their money and pack every away game at home and in Europe.

“You have the right to express your opinion – in the right way. But since my return, the team’s form has been really good.

“Before, they can be upset. But now we are looking ahead and moving forward. I would prefer if we were on the same page.

“I find the work behind the scenes exciting for next season. Not everything can be revealed now.

“We try to make the fans happy. I understand their frustration, but I think we’re much stronger when we’re all together.

“There’s enough people outside of Rangers that don’t want us to do well, so let’s make sure we’re together.”

Beale insists the upset does not affect the Gers force but noted the very public nature of the protests.

“It’s not something that carried through to the dressing room,” said the former QPR boss, who urged his side to be “more reckless” in front of goal.

“We know the season has been disappointing at times but all we can do is keep winning the next game and win it well.

“It’s nothing that has affected the group because we’re winning.

“But it was so visual today that it’s visible to everyone.”

It was Stuart Kettlewell’s first loss since he was replaced by Steven Hammell last month, initially as caretaker.

Kettlewell requested clarification on Sakala’s goal that gave Rangers a 2-1 lead and Slattery’s dismissal for trying to fend off Cantwell with his arm.

He said: “I need some clarity. Sakala’s offside for the third goal which was a massive moment in the game.

“I would also like some clarity on Calum Slattery’s second yellow card. There is contact but he’s trying to protect the ball and he’s not aware of the guy behind him and the contact was made on Cantwell’s shoulder.

“It’s going to be really frustrating.

“I’m not calling out anyone, I’m really asking for clarity. But the third goal seems to me our player Dan Casey is the blue line which is behind the red line which is Sakala from the pics I’ve seen.

“From what I’ve seen, it looks like he’s offside. We never berated the referee or the fourth official, we don’t hammer the system in any way, but it’s a big goal at a big time.

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