Hibs defender Paul Hanlon has sympathy for Rangers squad

By Brian McLauchlinBBC Scotland
Hanlon will next be in action for Hibs against Ayr in the Scottish Cup
Hanlon will next be in action for Hibs against Ayr in the Scottish Cup

Hibernian defender Paul Hanlon says he sympathises with the players at Ibrox and the difficult choices they have to make in taking pay cuts.

But Hanlon says, if Rangers were to go bust, other clubs would have a greater opportunity to play European football.

"If there was no Rangers then it would be up to other clubs to step up." the Scotland Under-21 international told BBC Scotland.

"With things like playing in Europe then there would be spaces available."

Rangers players are bracing themselves for redundances after the club's administrator announced that a decision on their futures would be announced on Friday.

"It's disappointing for anybody to lose their job in any walk of life," said Hanlon.

"Some players will be looking after themselves while some will be interested in what's good for the club.

"It's a terrible situation they are in just now."

Gregg Wylde was one of the first players to leave Ibrox on Tuesday after agreeing a deal with the club's administrators.

The winger was a colleague of Hanlon's in Scotland's Under-21 set-up and the Hibs player is confident that the 21-year-old will soon find another club.

"I have not spoken to him, but I wish him all the best," he said.

"I'm sure Gregg will be fine and it won't be too long before he finds himself another club and do well for himself."

Meanwhile, Hibs manager Pat Fenlon is confident his side can avoid a repeat of last season's Scottish Cup exit by Ayr United, the side threatened by relegation in Division One but who are proving themselves to be knock-out specialists.

"It's going to be an old-style Scottish Cup match," said Fenlon, whose own side are battling against the drop in the top flight.

"It will be difficult, there's no doubt about that, but we've got a great opportunity.

"There are some good sides left in it. You've seen over the years cup winners can have poor seasons and end up winning a trophy.

"Over the course of the season, we haven't been good enough, but on a certain day we've been decent.

"That can happen - you can get days when it just clicks for you."