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Rangers still in for Davis

Walter Smith last night refused to say the deal to sign Steve Davis from Fulham is dead.

Rangers’ capture of Charlton Athletic defender Madjid Bougherra takes the club’s summer spending to almost £9million.

But Smith insists there’s still money left over to sign the creative midfield player he’s been looking to get for a year. The manager dropped a heavy hint, though, that the Irishman’s personal terms could be the deal breaker.

Smith is unwilling to destroy the Ibrox wage structure for one man living in the distorted world of the Premiership and upset other highprofile players on less money with Rangers.

He said: “There’s no dialogue between Rangers and Fulham at the moment but there is money left over to buy players on top of Bougherra, Kenny Miller, Kyle Lafferty and Andrius Velicka.

“What you’re looking for is good value in terms of transfer fee and wages. You don’t want to break into squad wage levels.”

Fulham’s 11th-hour escape from relegation has left them in a position where they can spend £16m on two forwards – Bobby Zamora and Andy Johnson – but still decline to sell Davis until they get the fee they’re looking for from Rangers.

Smith said: “The money that’s going about in the Premiership doesn’t make it impossible to deal in the transfer market but it has distorted it. They’ve made it awkward when it comes to trying to improve your group.

“But we’ll continue to try to bring one or two players in before the transfer deadline expires. I’ve been looking for a creative midfield player for the last 12 months but it’s not easy to get players exactly when you want them.”

Rangers can’t match Davis asking price

Glasgow Rangers boss Walter Smith has admitted that the Scottish giants can’t match Fulham’s £4m asking price for Northern Ireland midfielder Steven Davis.

The former Aston Villa midfielder spent the second half of last season on loan at Ibrox and is interested in making the move north of border permanent after struggling in his first year at Craven Cottage. But the Whites are holding firm to ensure they recoup the money they paid out for the talented midfielder under Lawrie Sanchez – and Smith has had to face up to the fact that his side are likely to be priced out of a move for the playmaker.

The likelihood of Davis lining up for Rangers next season has diminished with the news that Blackburn Rovers have registered their interest in signing him with Fulham – and they are willing to stump up the cash that the Old Firm side can’t.

Hodgson happy to hold on to Davis

Fulham manager Roy Hodgson last night insisted he will happily welcome Steven Davis back into his first-team plans unless Rangers match the London club’s £4million valuation.

Sportsmail understands Rangers made a fresh approach to the Craven Cottage outfit over the weekend to try to clinch the permanent signing of the Northern Ireland midfielder, who impressed on loan last season.

The Ibrox club, however, value Davis at closer to £3m and their hopes of using Daniel Cousin in part-exchange have been dismissed by Fulham.

Hodgson insisted he had no plans to drop the asking price, leaving the 23-year-old to sweat on his preferred move to Ibrox, while Middlesbrough and Newcastle monitor the situation.

‘Steven is a Fulham player,’ said Hodgson. ‘I know Rangers are interested in buying him and they have made bids which, so far, we have not found acceptable. He will only leave if a club matches our valuation.

‘I like Steven and get on well with him. But we were in a position last season where we were able to make him available for loan. It was no surprise to me that he did so well for Rangers and they want him back.

‘Every player has his price but, as far as we are concerned, Steven is still part of our squad and he will be welcomed back here.

‘We have signed one new midfield player but also lost a couple, so we are not trying to rush him out of the door.’

Fulham will only take cash for Davis

Rangers will no longer be able to use Daniel Cousin to part-finance the signing of Fulham’s Steven Davis.

The agent for Davis, Rob Segal, claims the London club have ended their interest in the powerful Gabon striker.

The effect on Rangers is that they must now table a cash-only offer for the Northern Irishman to keep him at Ibrox.

Davis arrived from Craven Cottage on loan in January and is interested in a permanent move north, but could opt to fight for regular football at Fulham.

Segal said: “There is a certain amount of urgency now because I think Rangers are back in training in a few weeks and Steven definitely wants it concluded.

“The clubs are in conversation to see if they can come to an agreement. Hopefully we are heading in the right direction.”

The midfielder had a successful four months at the end of last season and produced some excellent performances in Rangers’ Uefa Cup run, particularly against Sporting Lisbon in the quarter-final second-leg tie.

His tenacity, stamina and clever use of the ball will have impressed Walter Smith.

Now the Rangers manager must decide if he can afford to spend a large chunk of his transfer budget on a single player.

Smith’s decision would be aided, of course, if the Ibrox club could find another team interested in Cousin, who has made it clear his desire to play in the Premier League in England.

Davis waits for Rangers

Steven Davis’ agent has revealed that the Fulham midfielder is waiting to sign a permanent deal with Rangers.

Walter Smith signed Davis on loan in the January transfer window and the 23-year-old played a key role as the Glasgow giants won a domestic cup double.

A number of Premier League clubs have been linked with Davis but he is keen to secure a deal with Rangers.

The Cottagers are also ready to let him go for a fee in the region of £3million and agent Rob Segal hopes Rangers can come to an agreement.

Segal believes Rangers want to sign Davis and thinks a contract could be sorted out in the next fortnight.

“If Rangers have made a decision they want to sign him – and I’m sure that is the case – then we can get it done as there is a willingness in all parties,” Segal said.

“I don’t have a scheduled meeting with either club but they can speak on the phone, get it sorted out and who knows next week or the week after he could be signed.

“Steven loved his time at Ibrox and Rangers just have to agree terms with Fulham and we can all take it from there.”