Ex-Rangers and Everton boss Walter Smith dies

Former Rangers and Scotland manager Walter Smith has died at the age of 73, the Glasgow giants confirmed yesterday.

Smith won 21 trophies across two spells with Rangers, including 10 top-flight titles, and was the club's second-most successful manager after Bill Struth.

After taking over from Graeme Souness in 1991, he signed the likes of Paul Gascoigne and Brian Laudrup as Rangers clinched seven league titles in eight years, equalling Celtic's record of nine consecutive Scottish league titles.

Following a four-year spell in the English Premier League with Everton, Smith had a short stint as Alex Ferguson's assistant at Manchester United in 2004, rekindling a partnership at the 1986 World Cup with Scotland.

Later that year, he became manager of Scotland, but quit in 2007 to return to Rangers. In his first season back, the Ibrox giants reached the Uefa Cup final, losing 2-0 to Zenit St Petersburg, but they won three league titles before he retired in 2011.

Rangers chairman Douglas Park said: "I spoke with Walter as recently as last weekend. Even when he was battling illness, he was still able to provide advice and support. For that, I am personally grateful." - AFP, REUTERS