Jimmy Nicholl enjoying life at Rangers second time around

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Jimmy Nicholl is determined to savour every minute of his return to Rangers after the latest twist in his football love affair.

The former Northern Ireland international is back at the club he served twice as a player after being asked to assist new boss Graeme Murty.

He has now jetted out with the Light Blues to America, where Murty’s men are competing in the Florida Cup, but Nicholl admits he is still stunned by the latest turn of events.

The 61-year-old has been working as number two to Northern Ireland manager Michael O’Neill since 2015 but only made his return to day-to-day club duties with Falkirk in October – three years on from resigning as Cowdenbeath boss.

He never expected to get the call from Ibrox but the ex-Raith Rovers and Millwall manager is determined to make the most of the opportunity now that it has arrived.

“Listen, it’s like everything else, when things happen in football it never ceases to amaze you, it just came out of the blue,” he told RangersTV.

“I had had two spells at Cowdenbeath and then I was at Northern Ireland with Michael O’Neill. So the first surprise was when Michael asked me to come in and join him.

“That was a surprise because they were top of the group, but he invited me in and I was thankful for that and I’m still enjoying it.

“But that’s you back to just working at the weekends and Michael phoning you on the Thursday, telling you who to go and watch in Scottish football on the Saturday and then report back on the Monday or Tuesday.

“I never saw 7 o’clock in the morning for three years until Paul Hartley said, ‘If I get the Falkirk job will you come in with me?’ He gets the job, I go in and then my whole life stage just changes.

“It’s only when you go back into the full-time stuff, that you say, ‘Jeez I missed it’.

“It’s only when you get back to the day-to-day stuff with the players in the dressing room and on the training pitch that you think, ‘Right, this is what it is all about’.

“At my age I’m still grateful that people think you can do a job.

“The satisfaction you get is the fact that the manager and people think you have got something to offer and that’s a big thing. I’ll do my best to offer whatever I can in terms of knowledge and experience.

“So we will wait and see but I’m really excited about getting stuck in.”

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