Walter Smith has confirmed he is leading a new bid to buy Rangers.
The former Ibrox boss will be assisted in the offer - believed to be in the region of £6million - by Scottish businessmen including Jim McColl and Douglas Park.
Smith has called on Charles Green, whose consortium is in place to complete their £5.5million purchase of Rangers on a newco basis, to stand aside.Smith said in a statement: "I can today confirm that following talks over the last few weeks I am leading a new bid for Rangers Football Club.
"I have been assisted by Jim McColl, Douglas Park and other prominent Scottish businessmen with a shared objective - that Rangers Football Club should be in the hands of Rangers people who will stabilise the club and protect it from future situations like we find ourselves in today.
"With this in mind, representatives have, on behalf of my group, made representations to BDO, Duff and Phelps and indeed Charles Green, notifying them of our willingness to offer on the "Newco" basis on which Mr Green is proceeding.
"We would call on Mr Green to step aside and allow us to proceed with our deal which is in the best interests of the creditors, the employees, the fans and the various other stakeholders of Rangers Football Club."
The surprise development came on the day that a Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA) was formally rejected at a meeting of creditors.
The CVA was doomed to failure after Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs informed administrators Duff and Phelps on Monday that they would vote against the proposal, thus ensuring it did not receive the 75 per cent backing required to move the club out of administration.
Rangers Football Club will now move towards liquidation, with Green set to acquire the business and assets on a newco basis.
The administrators today released a statement confirming the rejection of the CVA and "imminent" newco deal.
Smith, who enjoyed two successful spells at the Ibrox helm, explained his consortium's motivation behind the dramatic 11th hour bid.
He said: "None of our group has any desire to own Rangers Football Club but we have put this deal in place to save the club.
"However, our overriding objective is to ensure that the stadium, the history and everything else magical about Rangers Football Club is protected and nurtured back to good health and provide a platform for Rangers for generations to come.
"Let's be clear, this is an acquisition designed to stabilise the club and ensure history does not repeat itself.
"We are not in this to take money out of the club but more so to do whatever it takes in a turnaround plan to ensure within a few years the club can be passed on intact and to the right people.
"The supporters should be under no illusion that it will be extremely hard, but with their support we can overcome financial hardship that lies ahead by lending their support to what we feel is the correct way forward - for Rangers people who know the club inside and out to control its destiny.
"The prominent Scottish businessmen involved have agreed to provide acquisition funding to allow myself and a management team to take on Rangers Football Club and make the business self-sufficient with long term sustainability being essential."
Smith played a crucial role in Rangers' "Nine in a Row" campaign during his first spell as manager between 1991-98.
The veteran boss then returned to the hotseat in January 2007 before handing over the reins to Ally McCoist last summer.
His two tenures saw Smith win 10 titles, while lifting the Scottish Cup five times and claiming the League Cup on six occasions.
He also guided the Glasgow giants to the UEFA Cup final in Manchester in 2008.
Smith added: "I would hope that this offer is fully supported by everyone in the Rangers Family as without them the club cannot and will not survive.
"We therefore want to ensure honesty and transparency in everything we do. We want to rebuild Rangers Football Club and in doing so return the institution to the standards it is known for."
Green's hopes of quickly turning his club into a profitable enterprise were earlier hit by reports that manager Ally McCoist was set to quit after apparently discovering Green planned to replace him.
McCoist leaving would undoubtedly lead to fans holding back on buying season tickets and players walking out on the club, as they are free to do under UK employment law.
With continued uncertainty over the club's Clydesdale Bank Premier League status - Aberdeen today hinted they would vote against a newco application - and reports that Green has seen investors drop out, it would be no surprise if the former Sheffield United chief executive was having second thoughts about the financial wisdom of his involvement in a new Rangers.
Green, who has previously stated he does not see himself lasting a year at Ibrox, now has a potential opportunity to cut his losses - or even make a very quick profit - but it is unclear whether he is able to do so.
Administrators Duff and Phelps have consistently stressed that they have a "binding" contract with Green and that there is no recourse for rival bidders to step in.
Joint-administrator Paul Clark, who admitted on Tuesday that Green had not lodged the full £5.5million newco sale price with Duff and Phelps, told shareholders: "We had a dual strategy in relation to Charles Green's offer.
"In the event the CVA was rejected we would proceed with sale of business and assets.
"That has not yet been concluded but we do have agreed documents and funds from Mr Green.
"It is our intention to complete that sale at the earliest opportunity, and probably during the course of the afternoon."
McCoist was present at Ibrox during both the creditors' meeting and a subsequent shareholders' meeting - which both lasted less than 10 minutes - but looked grim-faced and refused to comment when asked about his future outside Ibrox.
On his arrival at Ibrox on Thursday morning, Green briefly told Sky Sports News that he "100 per cent" wanted McCoist to stay.
"We want Ally McCoist and all the players to remain with the club," he said.