Rangers simply must cash-in on star players if they are to compete on the same financial plain as Celtic, says Kieran Maguire. 

The football finance guru and new Football Insider columnist made his assessment in exclusive conversation with correspondent Adam Williams after this website revealed Rangers fear losing at least one of Connor Goldson, James Tavernier or Borna Barisic in the near future.

Rangers have made just £7.78million from player sales over the past five seasons but Maguire claims they now have assets worth up to £20m.

Celtic by contrast have raked in £58.15m, mainly through the sales of Kieran Tierney in August 2019 (£25m) and Moussa Dembele in August 2018 (£19.7m).

While there is no doubt a stigma attached to relinquishing your finest assets, player sales are crucial to a club’s financial health, as Maguire explains.

“What’s happened in the last few years is the directors have said to Steven Gerrard ‘we are prepared to back you going into the market,'” he told Football Insider.

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“They’ve been paying reasonable fees. They’re shopping at the moment in the £3-8m bracket, which Celtic have been doing for the past few years.

“But what Celtic have been very successful at is that each season they’ve sold someone like Tierney or Dembele, and that made them a £20m profit.

“But Rangers now have a squad that can begin to sell players in that £15-20m bracket, and that can help them as they go on.”

Whatever their transfer strategy going forward, Rangers are making significant sporting gains on their Old Firm rivals this season.

They are 19 points clear in the Scottish Premiership and are into the knockout rounds of the Europa League, while Celtic finished bottom of their group.

In related news, a former Premier League man has had his say on the potential sale of three big-name Ibrox players.