DAVE KING reckons Rangers boss Steven Gerrard is content with the financial backing that he has had from the Ibrox board on the back of their Premiership title success.

Gerrard - who last month claimed the champions 'haven't spent a penny' in the last two transfer windows - appeared to voice his frustration with Rangers' strategy in the aftermath of the defeat to Sparta Prague as he claimed 'big money' had to be invested to compete at European level.

Rangers added John Lundstram, Fashion Sakala, Nnamdi Ofoborh and Juninho Bacuna to their squad in the summer and face a must-win game against Brondby in the Europa League on Thursday night.

Former Ibrox chairman King was asked about Gerrard's stance at a meeting of Club 1872 members and insists the 41-year-old continues to be grateful for the support he has received.

King said: "I wasn’t aware of Steven’s comment in that regard and I am a little surprised by it. I think obviously context of the comment would perhaps make a difference.

"If I could perhaps put it this way, that I think Steven is already on record, certainly in discussions I have had with him and comments I have seen him make in the media subsequently, in having pretty much unstinting praise for the support that he has had from the board.

"I think that question might be related more to Europe and it is really positioning the club and saying that without heavy expenses in a transfer window it is going to be difficult to make progress in Europe. I think particularly if there were ambitions this year for the Champions League.

"If you look at what we know to be true, I think Steven has placed on record his support to the board for supporting him in the transfer window.

"I think it is also important, and supporters might not realise this, but the manner in which the board supported Steven was essentially to bridge the gap that the club has got. We are a big club with big ambitions but in a small footballing market in Scotland."

King was the man that brought Gerrard to Ibrox from Liverpool three years ago and provided him with the first tranches of funds to overhaul a ramshackle Rangers squad.

Further investment was ultimately rewarded with a historic 55th title last term and King believes the Ibrox hierarchy have played their part in increasing the budget available once again this season.

King added: "In the years since I left the board, I think between Ross (Wilson) and Steven they have done a really good job in pre-identifying players, they brought some players in early.

"I think it would be a fairly obvious calculation for supporters to make to look at the quality of the player that has come into the club with (Jack) Simpson, (Scott) Wright, Lundstram, Sakala and look at the players who left the club and there is no doubt that the wage bill has again gone up this season.

"As far as I am concerned, the board has certainly supported the manager in the transfer market and I think that is his true belief.

"My understanding is that he does recognise that he has been supported, but he is making more a comment that if we are going to make progress in the Champions League we need to start finding other ways to attract players."