Date: 30th December 2016 at 7:09am
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Less than 48 hours before facing five times champions Celtic at Ibrox Mark Warburton has produced the most negative team talk in Scottish football history.

Whinging about money was out of bounds for Alan Stubbs last season but seems fair game for the former city trader as e attempts to explain why his side can’t beat teams like St Johnstone and Ross County while losing to Hearts and Aberdeen. All clubs with much smaller budgets than Warbo.

In April this year the former Brentford supremo lapped up a Scottish Cup win over Celtic then celebrated by bringing in 11 players better than the side that had beaten Celtic at Hampden.

As #goingfor55 was launched for the gullible and deluded Warbo lapped up a new increased contract and purred with excitement at the new signings he was able to bring in.

Now halfway through the league campaign it’s a different tune. It seems that the former city trader has gained an insight into the terms and conditions of Brendan Rodgers squad.

Rather than spend money on Joe Garner and Phillippe Senderos Warbo could have signed Moussa Dembele and Cristian Gamboa and have money to spare, his scout Frank McParland is apparently the number one star spotter in the world and exclusively responsible for the career of Raheem Sterling.

Raising the white flag of surrender Warbo told The Sun: “If you looked at wage structures I’m sure you’d be staggered at the disparity. Our job is to make sure we can compete as soon as possible.

Are we happy with the gap? Of course not. We have got to close it. I’m sure you all wrote at the time about what happened to Rangers.

Now the club is coming back, and our job has to be to close that gap as quickly as we can but we recognise there is a significant financial disparity. There is no inferiority complex, just a realisation. It is a fact.”

Warbo added: “I can’t control Celtic and the Champions League money coming in. I can only focus on Rangers and how we are going to close the gap.

We’re not going to close it between now and the end of the season. We’re not going to spend £40 million in January. That’s not going to happen.

I keep hearing we are behind. But we can’t compete anywhere near with the wages currently being paid, or fees being paid, at Celtic.”

Rather than go public about a subject he knows nothing about (Celtic’s wage structure) perhaps Warbo could spend his own budget better.

Joey Barton, Nico Kranjkar, Jordan Rossiter and Senderos didn’t come cheaply. Their combined salaries probably match or exceed the entire budgets of Kilmarnock, Ross County or Hamilton Accies.

By offering up excuses in advance for his players Warbo is giving his directors the perfect opportunity to send the former city trader back to his family in London ahead of next season’s renewed #goingfor55 campaign.

CLICK HERE for The two faces of Mark Warburton- what he said to Stubbs about wages

CLICK HERE for Rodgers derby promise to Celtic fans

CLICK HERE for Warbo denies #goingfor55