Walter Smith has been appointed manager of Rangers for a second time. He has quit his post as Scotland head coach to return to the job he gave up in 1998 and has signed a three-year contract.
The Scottish Football Association have confirmed their intention to take legal action against Smith “for breach of contract” and against Rangers “for inducement to breach the contract”.
In a statement, the SFA said: “At a meeting this morning with the chief executive of the Scottish FA, Walter Smith delivered a letter of resignation with immediate effect from his position as national coach of the Scotland team.
“No agreement has been reached with Mr Smith or Rangers Football Club on any compensation payment to be made for the early termination of his employment, which is in breach of his contract with the Scottish FA.”
Smith was Rangers executive chairman Sir David Murray’s first choice for the position from the moment Paul Le Guen left the club by mutual agreement six days ago.
The 58-year-old Glaswegian led Rangers to seven consecutive league titles before departing for a stint at Everton, which was much less successful.
The Scotsman’s Frank Malley is adamant that Smith is doing untold damage to his reputation.
Rangers are a club with no money, no prospect of prizes, a team ravaged by in-fighting, decimated by the French follies of departed manager Paul Le Guen and a chairman in Sir David Murray who lures Smith while, some say, preparing to jump ship himself.
It is a pity a compromise cannot be engineered whereby Smith could satisfy his yearning for an Ibrox return while seeing Scotland through their current campaign.
It is not as if he has to put in thousands of air miles tracking Scottish talent, and the disaster otherwise known as Berti Vogts should have told the SFA that local knowledge often goes much further than the amount of man hours when it comes to inspiring footballers.
I’ll spare you the payroll comparisons (mostly because I’m too lazy to look them up), but Wycombe have managed to hang around with Chelsea’s zillionaire corps today, with the Wanderers trailing, 1-0, in the first leg of their Worthless Cup semi-final.