Tuesday, October 4, 2022

Three Things Rangers Should Have Addressed In The Summer Transfer Window

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Pratyay Maitra
A sports enthusiast in his mid-twenties who reads, breathes, as well as dreams (mostly) about football and attempts to share his views with the fanatics by jotting it down. Prefers to learn through extensive interaction, communication and exploration. So don't be in a quandary and SHOOT.

Rangers are already having a roller coaster ride so early this campaign. They indeed punched above their weight to defeat PSV in Eindhoven and secure a Champions League berth but, at the same time, surrendered dreadfully against Celtic in the Old Firm clash.

Although the Gers welcomed seven new names this window, Giovanni van Bronckhorst is struggling without Joe Aribo and Calvin Bassey amid the form and fitness reasons of an array of first-team stars. Some of their summer signings have settled in quite well, but the manager should have gone for more quality ahead of clashing heads with the likes of Liverpool, Ajax and Napoli.

No Proper Replacement For The Wantaway Stars

Meanwhile, things might get even worse for the Light Blues with Ryan Kent and Alfredo Morelos set to be free agents next summer. They have been integral to Rangers‘ recent rise and the club, therefore, should have pursued like-for-like replacements due to the uncertainty over their long-term future.

Antonio Colak has now emerged as the first-choice centre-forward ahead of Morelos, but the Croatian ‘number 9’ must not be viewed as the alternative to the Colombian hitman. Instead, the Gers should have bolstered the frontline further given the persistent injury problems of Kemar Roofe along with Cedric Itten’s departure.

Kent, on the other hand, is still irreplaceable down the left irrespective of his lack of form of late.  New recruits Rabbi Matondo and Malik Tillman have been more effective from the right whereas Tom Lawrence, despite the mastery as a left-winger during his Derby County days, has exhibited more control and creative spark while operating as a ‘number 10′. A club of Rangers’ profile should have added more quality in order to reduce the reliance on underperforming Morelos and Kent.

No New Goalkeeper

In spite of having Scott Bain as Joe Hart’s understudy, Celtic showed more ambition by roping in Benjamin Siegrist on a Bosman. Rangers, however, extended 40-year-old Allan McGregor’s contract and promoted Jon McLaughlin as the new ‘number 1′ who has only been deployed sporadically since the summer of 2020. The Scotsman has not done enough to cement a starting role for a Champions League side and his erroneous display against the Hoops exposed the Light Blues’ frailty in the last line of defence.

The Exit Of Bassey And Aribo

Rangers accepted Ajax’s hefty offer for Bassey who was their standout performer in the Europa League final. Financial constraints forced them to part ways with their prized asset, but they could not find someone capable of emulating his success in the defensive third. Although Ben Davies and Ridvan Yilmaz are yet to settle in new surroundings, none of them holds the attributes of the young Nigerian who was more relentless in both the centre-half and left fullback roles.

Aribo, too, left for Southampton who was a massive contributor to their success under both Steven Gerrard and Van Bronckhorst. Predominantly a box-to-box midfielder, the Super Eagles playmaker depicted his versatility by slotting in down the right, as a ‘number 10’ and even a ‘False 9’. Lawrence has certain similarities in his game, but the current injury woe is a roadblock after such a bright start to life at Ibrox.

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