Scottish Football: Miller's grim forecast

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The Independent Online
WILLIE MILLER, the Aberdeen manager, said yesterday that the Pittodrie club would 'have to sell our best players if the directors don't increase the club's debt'.

Miller made his grim forecast on the eve of the home game against Dundee United as the club cut costs to counter the debt incurred by the building of a new stand.

'This club is frugal with money,' he said. 'And they won't increase the debt. At the end of the season, we will have to make cuts. But we won't make the changes at the expense of the youth policy, which has to be the way ahead for us.

'Rangers can lose an international player to injury and simply replace him with another. Now we are competing with the Motherwells and Hibernians of this world. Buying can only follow selling.'

Miller has lost two key players for today's match, with Scott Booth injured and Gary Smith banned.

United are without Jerren Nixon and Dave Hannah, and there are doubts about Billy McKinlay (groin), Andy McLaren and Brian Welsh, both with flu.

The Rangers manager, Walter Smith, revealed that David Robertson, out for at least two games after pulling a hamstring against the Netherlands on Wednesday, will be replaced against Hearts at Tynecastle by Gary Stevens.

Hearts, who have not beaten Rangers in 13 matches, have serious problems, with Scott Leitch missing and another six struggling.

Celtic, at home to second-placed Motherwell, bring in Barry Smith, 20, in place of Lee Martin (virus).