Football

Smith - No letting up

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Rangers manager Walter Smith has warned his players they must continue to produce the goods between now and the end of the season after it emerged that crisis talks helped them bounce back from last week's crushing Old Firm derby defeat.

Skipper David Weir revealed in his programme notes for Sunday's Clydesdale Bank Premier League game against St Johnstone how Smith summoned his players to a meeting at Murray Park in the wake of the loss to Celtic.

Rangers responded by beating Sporting Lisbon to book their place in the last 16 of the Europa League on Thursday, before sealing a comfortable 4-0 win over Saints at Ibrox, and Smith said: "We managed to get a decent reaction from everyone for the game on Thursday and it was a good reaction from everyone today. If it's down to the meeting, then fine."

He added: "The most important thing was getting a reaction from the players but I don't think it needed the meeting to be honest with you.

"We were so poor in that game that everyone was aware of that situation and there had to be better performances.

"The main thing is that we got a decent reaction for this week but it's not just this week that's going to matter this season, it's going to be the forthcoming weeks. Everyone is going to have to do that for the whole season.

"Football is football and there were a lot of assumptions made after the game last Sunday. I'm talking about people outside football.

"I think the people who are involved in football realise things like that happen. Seasons very rarely go the way you plan them out and you've always got to overcome problems that you have.

"We had a problem after the game against Celtic and we've still to show that we've overcome that problem because there is still a lot of football to be played."

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Topics:
Europa League
Football
Southampton
Premier League

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