Owner Craig Whyte vows to add to Rangers squad

Craig Whyte and Gordon Smith
Whyte and director of football Gordon Smith were left unhappy in Malmo

Rangers owner Craig Whyte has vowed that more signings will be made despite their failure to reach the lucrative Champions League group stage.

And he has denied that Wednesday's exit at the hands of Malmo was down to a lack of new arrivals this summer.

"Rest assured, new faces will be arriving at Ibrox," Whyte said in a club website statement.

"But, had 11 players remained on the pitch last night, I have no doubt we would have won the match."

Defenders Steven Whittaker and Madjid Bougherra were both sent off as Ally McCoist's side were held to a 1-1 draw in Sweden, with Malmo progressing thanks to their single-goal win a week earlier at Ibrox.

"Like every Rangers fan, I was bitterly disappointed by the result in Malmo last night and I share the supporters' frustration that we will not be competing in the Champions League this season," said Whyte.

"However, we will look forward and not back and we must pick ourselves up and get on with the job of ensuring that Rangers fans enjoy a successful season.

"Ally and I sat together on the plane home and had a positive discussion about our signing plans.

"We have already recruited three new players and also secured key existing players on long-term contracts."

Rangers latest transfer blow came when Whyte's club were beaten by Blackburn Rovers to the signature of Dundee United and Scotland striker David Goodwillie.

That news came shortly after McCoist said that their loss to Malmo showed that they needed to strengthen the squad.

"I fully understand the fans' frustration at the transfer speculation we have seen in recent weeks," added Whyte, whose takeover of the club was successful in May.

"Ally himself has said publicly that we are a good side that only recently won the league championship.

"Yes, we want to see new faces, but we all believed we should have been strong enough over two legs against Malmo.

"Our efforts to sign players have not been helped by the fact we were trying to do business early in the transfer window.

"Selling clubs, particularly in England, were in no rush to make final decisions on their players.

"If anyone looks at when this club's transfer business has really been done in the last few years, it is towards the end of the window, either in mid to late August or late January.

"That said, we have move on and we will go forward working together as a club determined to build on our success of recent seasons."