Novo happy to leave future at Rangers in agent hands

Striker fully focused on tonight's Scottish Cup replay against St Mirren at Ibrox
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The Independent Online

Nacho Novo insists he is still in the dark over his Rangers future as he focuses on the club's quest for domestic glory.

The striker, 30, is out of contract at the end of the season and says he is more than happy to take a back seat and allow his agent to thrash out a new deal on his behalf.

With Rangers battling for silverware on three fronts, Novo is keen to focus on matters on the pitch instead.

Speaking ahead of today's Scottish Cup replay against St Mirren, he said: "I don't want to know anything. I just want to concentrate on playing and that's all I'm going to do.

"It's down to my agent, that's why I pay him and he will deal with my contract. I don't want to think about anything. I just want to play and do well for the club.

"I've always been happy here and, while I'm here, I want to concentrate on my job and win games."

Regardless of whether he stays at Rangers beyond this summer or not, Novo has relished the opportunity to work with Walter Smith.

Like that of several of his players, the Ibrox manager's own future is unclear after he and his back-room staff agreed to work without new deals when their contracts expired in January in a bid to ease the financial pressure on the club.

"I don't know his situation," Novo said. "The gaffer has been fantastic to me since I've been here and he is a person who I have a lot of respect for.

"He is one of the top managers, like Alex Ferguson. Every single one of the players wants to play for him.

"I think he has demonstrated already how much Rangers means to him and how much he means to Rangers.

"Other managers in other situations would have already left but he just keeps fighting. He is a great personality and has shown how much he loves the club. He is a great manager."

Rangers hope to overcome St Mirren at the second time of asking to book a place in the last eight of the Scottish Cup, having already secured a meeting with the Paisley club in the Co-operative Insurance Cup final next month.

A 10-point lead at the summit of the Clydesdale Bank Premier League suggests a domestic treble is a realistic target for the Scottish champions but Novo was keen to stick to the party line.

"There is still a long way to go," he said. "We are still in the position where we can do things but nothing is finished yet. We are just thinking about each week, each game.

"Each game is different. We need to concentrate on trying to win the games and this is a massive game for us tomorrow night."

Tony Mowbray meanwhile has urged his Celtic side to make the Old Firm derby at the end of the month "interesting" by beating Dundee United in the league this weekend. "We have to cope with the frustration of the draw at Aberdeen, stick together and move on," Mowbray said.

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