Going Up Tranmere - Ian Muir

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Venners reject is Muir the Merrier

Tommy Docherty wanted him to make his QPR debut at the age of sixteen. George Graham cured his homesickness when he wanted to pack it all in. Terry Venables and Ron Saunders both told him thanks but no thanks. But Tranmere hit-man lan Muir is still banging in a goal every other game - and picking up a tip or two from fellow Merseyside striker lan Rush.

Muir says: "Tranmere deserved promotion but we should really have won the title. It was always going to be between us and Rotherham.

"I'm delighted to be moving back up a grade and eventually I want to play at the very top again. I'd love the chance to prove a few people wrong."

He would also like to prove Tommy Docherty right. Muir recalls: "The Doc always said if you were good enough, you were old enough and when I was 16 he told me I was playing in a Second Division match for QPR against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.

"Unfortunately for me, Paul Goddard suddenly recovered from a stomach bug and I didn't play.

"I was feeling really homesick but George Graham was youth team manager at the time and he told me how he always used to feel the same at my age. "It really helped and when I finally made my debut for QPR I scored two goals. "But I didn't find the net in my next match and there was a clear- out. Terry Venables sent me a letter saying I was being released and I was gutted. I had scored two goals in two games. "I moved to Birmingham City and played against Liverpool at Anfield. lan Rush scored and we lost 1-0.

"But Ron Saunders didn't like my skilful style of play and it wasn't until Frank Worthington took me from Brighton to Tranmere that my career could begin to take an upward turn again."

Now Muir, 26, is knocking in goals galore, as last season's total of 28 in all competitions confirms.

He has also picked up a tip from Merseyside goal-king lan Rush.

Muir says: "I've noticed the way he deflects other people's shots into the net, sending the goalkeeper the wrong way in the process. Now I have started to pick up goals for Tranmere in the same way.

"And I'm sure we can give our side of the Mersey a club to be proud of too - we have the facilities and now we should have the crowds again as well."