By George Overhill

25th Nov, 2022 | 3:45pm

Rangers have Monday deadline for Michael Beale to avoid vacuum, time running out

Rangers are at risk of a “vacuum” opening for Ross Wilson once the players return to training, according to Paul Forsyth in The Times.

Michael Beale is by nearly all accounts the man in the driving seat to take the vacant manager’s job but time is ticking, with the squad set to return to Auchenhowie on Monday (28 November).

Giovanni van Bronckhorst was sacked on Monday (21 November), with numerous names linked before Steven Gerrard’s former assistant soon emerged as the frontrunner.

But despite Beale apparently wanting a return to Ibrox, and QPR director of football Les Ferdinand stating that he wouldn’t be looking to force anyone to stay at Loftus Road it appears the move is proving to be more complicated than first thought.

And Forsyth writes in The Times on Friday: “Assuming both parties want it to happen, he and the club will need permission to speak, terms will have to be agreed and a deal struck sooner rather than later.

“Before he has even signed a contract, he is playing catch-up, with a diary full of challenges, most of which are coming over the horizon at a rate of knots.

“Maybe it is not realistic for a manager who is still in another job to be out there on the Auchenhowie pitches as soon as Monday morning, but the last thing Rangers want is a repeat of the situation a year ago when Gerrard departed for Aston Villa, took his backroom staff with him and left Ross Wilson, the sporting director, with a vacuum to fill.”

Time is of the essence

Once it became clear that Beale was the preferred candidate to return to Rangers it started to look like a foregone conclusion that he would be named imminently.

While that still may well happen, it is turning into a more complicated affair than may have been hoped, with the window to take advantage of the unique World Cup break rapidly closing.

The board are sure to be eyeing the 6 December AGM as a date that they want a new man installed in time for, to take some of the heat off them for what has so far been a pretty miserable season.

But in terms of actual improvements on the pitch, any delays from Monday onwards will represent wasted time on the training ground.

Whether the new man is set to be backed in the January transfer window or not, he won’t be receiving an entire new line up, so he needs as much time with the current players as possible if there is to be even a slight chance to reel in Celtic at the top of the table.

The next Old Firm derby is only a couple of weeks after the return to league action, with the Hoops arriving at Ibrox on 2 January, so it is imperative that the hierarchy get things ironed out as quickly as possible.

Given the positive signals apparently coming from either side of the potential reunion this week it doesn’t reflect particularly well on either for the process to become drawn out when they should be roughly on the same page.

In other Rangers news, one name who was mooted as a potential new manager has now been tipped to take a different role at the club.