By Matt Farr

Rangers coach Jim Stewart believes Matt Gilks was forced to quit the club purely because of the impressive form of Wes Foderingham.

The former Rangers goalkeeper admitted to the Scottish Sun that the 34-year-old had little choice but to pursue a fresh start away from Ibrox last month.

Gilks had only signed for the Glasgow giants at the start of the season, and only made five appearances for the club in domestic cup competitions, and not a single league appearance.

He chose to end his Ibrox nightmare during last month’s transfer window, joining English Championship outfit Wigan on an 18-month deal.

He found opportunities at a premium, with Mark Warburton showing a clear preference towards Foderingham as his preferred No.1 this season.

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The form of the 26-year-old did not help Gilks’ case either, with the English stopper keeping 10 clean sheets from his 27 appearances this term.

Ibrox senior man Stewart believes that this was the main reason why Gilks made the decision to quit the club last month.

He told the Scottish Sun: “I think Wes has been first-class.

“Matty was desperate to get his opportunity in the first-team, but because Wes has been so consistent since the start of the season, it was awkward for Gilks to get that opportunity.

“Unfortunately, he made that decision to move on.”

Rangers have since replaced Gilks with former Newcastle man Jak Alnwick. The 23-year-old is expected to compete with Foderingham for a starting role, and could make his debut in the Scottish Cup clash with Morton on Saturday.

In other Rangers transfer news, ex-Ibrox midfielder Barry Ferguson has delivered his verdict on Mark Warburton and runs the rule over his January signings.

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