Rangers can still win promotion, says Kenny McDowall

Rangers caretaker manager Kenny McDowall and striker Kris Boyd during training
Kenny McDowall (left) was placed in charge at Rangers after Ally McCoist resigned

Caretaker-manager Kenny McDowall insists Rangers can still secure promotion - despite a 4-0 defeat by Hibernian in his debut in charge.

Hearts now lead the Ibrox side by 15 points at the top of the Scottish Championship, with Hibs only four adrift of McDowall's team in third.

Asked if he believes promotion is possible, McDowall said: "Absolutely.

"That's the way you have to be here. We are expected to win games, to win leagues, to win cups."

Ally McCoist had been placed on gardening leave ahead of the defeat at Easter Road, with his former assistant McDowall being put in charge.

Rangers had been unable to afford a pay-off for McCoist after he announced his resignation, while promising midfielder Lewis Macleod was sold to Brentford to help pay running costs.

But McDowall insists that the Glasgow club's continuing financial problems are no excuse for failure on the pitch.

Scott Robertson celebrates as he scores Hibs' third against Rangers
Rangers were beaten 4-0 by Hibs in McDowall's first game in charge

"The players know that and know what they have to do, so we carry on regardless," said the 51-year-old former Partick Thistle and St Mirren striker.

"I'm not looking above us to Hearts or over my shoulder to Hibs.

"All I'm looking at is Dumbarton on Saturday. It's one game at a time, I've said that all along."

Only the league champions are automatically promoted, with a second place up for grabs via the play-offs, and McDowall thinks Rangers have what it takes to go up this season.

"First of all, we have got to get back working hard," he said. "We appreciate it was a poor performance against Hibs. The lads were disappointed with themselves.

"We sat through the video and looked at the game. Everyone took their share of the blame.

"We have to do better. It's as simple as that. But we just don't become a bad team overnight.

"We just need to get back to winning ways come Saturday.

"It's always great to play at Ibrox, so that will be a good thing, but it will be a tough game against Dumbarton."