COMMENT By Harvey Byrne
Rangers have been on the search for a director of football since Mark Warburton left the club in February with the Ibrox hierarchy looking to restructure their set-up.
The Scottish Sun claimed earlier in the week that the Gers had made Tottenham’s head of recruitment Paul Mitchell their number one target for the role after failing to convince Southampton’s Ross Wilson to move north of the border.
Mitchell has only been involved in two managerial appointments, but to say he got both correct would be downplaying the success.
Many turned their noses up as Southampton sacked two-time promotion winning manager Nigel Adkins, replacing him with the relatively unknown and non-English speaking Mauricio Pochettino in 2013.
However, the Argentinian has proven to be a huge success in England and has been the one to finally help Spurs break the top four.
To then replace a top class manager with another one in Ronald Koeman is a credit to Mitchell.
The Dutchman took the Saints to the Europa League twice before departing for Everton where he has currently got them battling with the top sides in the Premier League.
Now, Mitchell may not be too involved in the current Rangers managerial appointment, but in future he could be key to unearthing another gem for the famous side.
As the titled head of recruitment at each of MK Dons, Southampton and Tottenham it is fair to judge Mitchell by the players he has brought in.
Now, to say he’s got more correct than wrong is an understatement and player recruitment is key for any club.
Mitchell identified the likes of Dejan Lovren, Victor Wanyama, Sadio Mane and Toby Alderweireld for Southampton for relatively little cost.
At a bigger club in Tottenham he has had a few more duds, but he was also involved in bringing in current star Dele Alli from MK Dons in 2015.
Rangers fans were heavily critical of the players Warburton and Frank McParland brought in last summer, but Mitchell could be the man to help them follow the Celtic model of buying young emerging stars from around Europe and selling them on for big fees.
Mitchell has been involved with three clubs and during his time at all of them they have only progressed.
The 35-year-old laid the foundations for MK Dons to win promotion to the Championship before they then self-admittedly destroyed their transfer ethos, bringing in the likes of Matthew Upson, Dale Jennings and Simon Church after Mitchell had left.
Southampton’s success story is no secret either and while Mitchell was at the club they went from the Championship to a top 10 Premier League side in just two years and continue to battle among the top.
Meanwhile, as was already said Tottenham have now broken into the top four and like Pochettino, Mitchell was a huge part of that.
In other Rangers news, this Gers ace has been named in the SPFL team of the week after Hamilton demolition.