Football is always a game of fine margins. Just imagine that the Barisic freekick went in and how different Twitter would have been yesterday and today. Everyone in the media would have been talking about how Rangers now have a killer instinct, and the pressure is truly on Celtic this time around.
I am not saying that Rangers were good on the day, in fact far from it. There were a lot of the same issues we have seen for over two years now. However, some of the criticisms have been over the top, in my opinion. Just like that Barisic goal would not have made Rangers world-beaters; the same way we should not overreact for two dropped points on an almost unplayable plastic pitch in what promises to be a long, long campaign.
The negatives were there for everyone to see. Not enough drive, nor many ideas about how to get past ten men behind the ball. Same old, same old. However, this season we are seeing a Rangers defence (at least so far) which is simply not giving any chances to the opposition. We also have to remember that Kemar Roofe is still building up his fitness while Cedric Itten also needs to fit in. Demanding that they come in and start firing in from day one is not reasonable.
In that way, Morelos staying, for the time being, is a boon for me. If he leaves, so be it. But hopefully, by that time, Roofe and Itten will be more up to the pace of the game here in Scotland. With Celtic also set to see changes to their side (there cannot be any question that their side this time around is weaker than last season), this will be a long campaign. Gerrard has been backed with the money, but the Rangers fans need to be patient.
However, the club are definitely missing a box to box midfielder (say Zungu). While the Zungu deal is now dead seemingly, Rangers need to get a deal done for a central midfielder who will make the runs from midfield which will open up spaces. There is an obvious need for such a player, and everyone can see it. Hopefully, the club acts on this soon as a new player will need time to settle in.
This weekend’s game Vs Kilmarnock is a definite test. There cannot be any excuses, and 3 points is truly a must here. While Kevin Clancy being the referee is something most would not have wanted to see, there is no doubt that if Rangers play to their full potential, it would not matter.
While a lot of people think that the same issues of Rangers not being able to break down a really defensive setup by the opposition remains, I honestly don’t think that’s completely the issue. Aberdeen was an important test that was passed well on the opening day. Yes, the first goal is important, and hopefully, as this team settles down more, they would not be caught napping. With the defence Rangers currently have though, you have to be more confident that they would at least not concede on most days and even one goal could be enough for a win.
One last word before I end this piece, Ianis Hagi has not suddenly turned shit. He is going through a rough patch of form, and I have no doubt he would turn it around soon.
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