Former Rangers manager Walter Smith in hospital

PA Sport Staff
·2-min read

Former Scotland and Rangers manager Walter Smith is recovering in hospital after undergoing an operation, the Ibrox club have said.

No further details have been released about the condition of the 73-year-old, who also had a spell in charge of Everton.

Rangers said in a statement: “Rangers Football Club can confirm Walter Smith had an operation on Monday and he is currently recovering in hospital.

“His family have requested privacy at this time.”

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A defender in his playing career, he had two spells with Dundee United with a short stint at Dumbarton in between.

Smith’s managerial career began in 1978 with the Scotland Under-18 team, before taking charge of the Under-21 side.

Already at Rangers as assistant to Graeme Souness, Smith was appointed full-time manager in 1991 and enjoyed a successful seven years at the club before leaving at the end of the 1998 season.

Soccer – Clydesdale Bank Scottish Premier League – Motherwell v Rangers – Fir Park
Walter Smith during his second spell at Rangers with assistant Ally McCoist (PA)

In that time he led the club to nine titles in a row and was just one game away from reaching the Champions League final in 1993.

He joined Everton in the summer of 1998, but his four years in charge were unremarkable.

Smith briefly had a spell as Sir Alex Ferguson’s assistant at Manchester United in 2004 before being appointed manager of Scotland. Despite improving the team, they failed to reach the 2006 World Cup.

Walter Smith worked with Sir Alex Ferguson at Manchester United (PA).
Walter Smith worked with Sir Alex Ferguson at Manchester United (PA)

In 2007, Smith returned to Ibrox and enjoyed further domestic success.

He also led Rangers to the UEFA Cup final in 2008, losing 2-0 to Zenit St Petersburg.

He retired in 2011. His two spells in charge of Rangers saw him win 21 trophies, making him the club’s second-most successful manager behind Bill Struth.