Saturday, February 4, 2023

Update In Rangers’ Chase For This Everton Defensive Ace: Should Gerrard Follow Through On This?

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Ayush Chaurasia
Sports Management Graduate. Wannabe sports manager/writer and researcher. If not found disscussing about sports, will be seen talking about movies or tv shows. Miserable rest of the times.

According to the latest reports from Daily Record, Rangers are not going to make a move for Everton’s soon to be out of contract left-back Leighton Baines. Recently various rumours emerged that the former England international was on the verge of moving to Rangers, but that seems unlikely to happen if latest reports are to be believed.

Baines has been at Everton for more than a decade as he joined them in 2007 from Wigan Atheltic. However, in the last season, he made just six appearances in the Premier League, and he is already 34. The emergence of Lucas Digne has limited his game time further, and it is unlikely that he will be able to get into the first team regularly.

Does Rangers need a left back?

Rangers recently parted ways with their former captain Lee Wallace who hardly made any impact since Steven Gerrard took over. The Gers signed Borna Barisic in the summer of 2018, but the Croatian has been underwhelming in his performances in the last few months. He has also struggled with injuries, and some reports had emerged that Gerrard might look to sell him. However, the player himself said that the media blew things out of proportion.

Apart from him, Jon Flanagan and Andy Halliday filled in the left-back role, but both of them are not natural in that position. Therefore Gerrard might be keen to bring on a new left back option. However, signing a left back might not be a necessity as Flanagan and Halliday have filled in well when required.

Is Baines good enough for Rangers?

The issue with Flanagan and Halliday is that they haven’t been able to provide attacking output from the left. Fullback is now seen as an attacking position more often than not, and even Barisic has looked poor with his crossing. Therefore on the attacking front, we still feel Baines might be better than all three of them. The Englishman is known for his left foot, and he can ping in some delicious crosses.

However, he will not be a long term option, and we already saw how the signing of veteran Gareth McAuley turned out. Baines might struggle with the physicality of the league as well. Therefore missing out on him is not a big blow for the club.

Signing a left back is not a necessity for Rangers as Gerrard should probably give Barisic another season to prove himself. The Croatian started well, and the manager would hope that he can get back to his earlier form.

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