Ibrox Exclusive: McNamara reacts as Gerrard tells Rangers chiefs to sell big earner

Jackie McNamara says that Rangers manager Steven Gerrard needs players he knows can handle the pressure after green-lighting the exit of Brandon Barker.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider assistant editor Russell Edge, the former Scotland and Celtic defender says that playing for either Glasgow side is a “different animal” and not all players can deal with the demands.

As revealed by Football Insider earlier in January, Gerrard has told the club to find a move for 23-year-old Barker just months after his arrival after struggling to make an impact in the first team.

It comes after another Football Insider exclusive which revealed the backroom staff were concerned the winger was struggling with the pressures at Ibrox and McNamara says the demands of playing for a Glasgow giant are unrelenting.

“It’s the same at Celtic, the pressure and demands that are put on them, you can have all the ability but if you can’t handle playing there…” McNamara told Football Insider.

“It’s a different animal, you need to perform every game or you’re not playing. You need to win every game, every game is crucial as we’ve seen. They need everybody to be mentally strong and handle the demands of being a Rangers player or a Celtic player.

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“Gerrard, he needs everybody on it. If someone goes out the team, the one who comes in needs to be able to produce and handle the pressure.” 

Barker has played just 11 times since joining the club from Manchester City last summer on a lucrative contract worth more than £10,000-a-week, with five of those appearances coming in the Scottish Premiership.

He has the likes of Sheyi Ojo, Jordan Jones and Ryan Kent to battle with for a place in the starting XI.

In other Rangers news, it can be REVEALED the club have offered a player in part-exchange to sign a striker.