Davis welcomes back duo
Steven Davis hopes the return of Barry Ferguson and Allan McGregor will give Rangers a boost.
By Richard Bailey
Last Updated: 16/04/09 6:41pm
Steven Davis is hopeful that the imminent return of Barry Ferguson and Allan McGregor will give the Rangers squad a boost going into the title run-in.
The shamed duo are expected to be recalled to the squad just weeks after manager Walter Smith had hinted that the pair may never play for Rangers again.
Ferguson and McGregor were suspended by the club after flashing V-signs at photographers during Scotland's 2-1 win over Iceland after the pair had both been dropped from the starting XI following a drinking session prior to the clash.
But Smith is thought to have softened his opinion of his two players after being angered by the Scottish FA's decision to ban the pair from representing Scotland ever again.
"They are two quality players and from a players point of view it's a big bonus to have them back," he said.
"Hopefully they can help us out between now and the end of the season."
Despite acknowledging that the return of the two first-teamers will strengthen the squad, the former Aston Villa ace accepts that their absence has brought the team closer together following wins over Falkirk, St Mirren and Motherwell.
"Everybody has pulled together since everything happened," he added.
"There have been a few different things throughout the season that have gone on and I think we have shown a good togetherness.
"We had three difficult games in a week and managed to get positive results. Everything that happened is not going to have a major effect.
"We have had players out through injury, a lot of important players, like Kevin Thomson, who has been out for most of the season.
"He has been a big miss and we have missed Barry and Allan now for a few games, but if they can come back in and help us achieve our target, that will be a big bonus."
Meanwhile fellow midfielder Pedro Mendes, who has been playing alongside Maurice Edu in Ferguson's absence, agrees that having the former skipper and McGregor back can only benefit the team.
Many believe that the former Portsmouth ace, who alongside Davis has been nominated for the PFA Scotland Player of the Year, performs better without Ferguson alongside him but Mendes disagrees.
"(It is) exactly the same. We started the season without Barry when he was recovering from injury," he said.
"Then he came back and it was fantastic to play alongside him. Then for the reasons everyone knows he was out of the team.
"It was exactly the same though. Different players, but exactly the same spirit, the same way of playing, the same desire to win."