BY DARREN JOHNSTONE – Capital City Press
Rangers defender Darren McGregor has vowed to fight tooth and nail to ensure he is part of Mark Warburton’s Ibrox revival.
The 29-year-old was an unused substitute in Saturday’s entertaining 6-2 Petrofac Training Cup victory at Hibs as Warburton opted for summer recruits Danny Wilson and Rob Kiernan at centre half.
McGregor featured heavily last season when Ally McCoist, Kenny McDowall and Stuart McCall all held the reins at different stages, making a total of 53 appearances.
And the former St Mirren and Cowdenbeath player insists he is relishing the challenge of trying to become a first team regular under Warburton.
McGregor said: “The competition is fierce, we have so many positions full with good players so the jerseys are there to be fought for and I’m looking to fight for mine all the way.
“We’ve got two great young and hungry centre halves in Rob Kiernan and Danny Wilson, so I’ve got my work cut out.
“But I’ve always risen to challenges, whether it be here or at previous teams and I’m looking forward to that.
“I’ve landed at one of the best clubs in Britain and I want to stay here and contribute for as long as I can.
“I’ve got a year left on my deal and I will be looking to do my utmost to try and stay here and contribute as much as I can.
“I’m happy to bide my time and help out in any way I can.”
McGregor insists he is driven by the pain of last season’s disappointment after Rangers lost out on promotion back to the top-flight following a 6-1 aggregate play-off final thrashing to Motherwell.
He added: “From the outset we said we would like to win the league and win it comfortably but that never happened.
“We knew what happened in the play-offs and there was a huge disappointment within the players that were left, and also the guys that left.
“The guys that are here, we’ve got a lot to make up for because we could have been out of the door ourselves on the basis of performances, which were really poor.
“I definitely feel grateful for still being here and I think we’ve got a lot to prove.
“We now really need to focus on this season, we’ve got a new gaffer coming in and he’s got fresh ideas.
“The boys are buying into it and the guys that are left from last season have a point to prove.”
Despite being overlooked by Warburton for the first competitive game of the season, McGregor insists he has been impressed by the former Brentford manager.
Speaking to BBC Alba, he added: “He wants honesty from the players on and off the field, he wants us to respect each other and Murray Park.
“These wee small things can have a massive impact on match day and how you prepare.
“All the boys are buying into it and I believe we can only go one way.”