Why Rangers Don’t Play Anymore

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Since the catastrophic defeat to
Annan last week at Ibrox, the level of finger-pointing has reached epidemic
levels. Rangers supporters are quite categorically not happy with the product
on the pitch, and despite the club being comfortably in the lead in the third
division the crowds are starting to suffer from the lack of cohesive and
convincing football the side is producing in Govan.
With attendances starting to get
visibly lower (although the stated figure of around 34,000 for the visit of the
Galabankies may have been a tad inaccurate) fans appear to be slowly getting
frustrated at the complete lack of enjoyment in watching Rangers play.
So who is to blame for a team
with an SPL-level quality squad playing so poorly against plumbers and joiners
who earn £40 a week?
Obviously the place to start is
the manager, and given the number of supporters keen to see Ally McCoist vacate
his tenure as Rangers boss it is a pretty potent place to begin the
examination. Clearly every Rangers follower holds Super Ally in legendary
regard – he was a staggeringly good striker for the club in his playing days
and he stuck by it loyally as manager during its darkest hours of 2012. However
the increasing argument from his detractors is that sentiment cannot last
forever and the evidence on the turf points to his inability to arrange this
side in an effective manner.
Are they correct? Is McCoist out
of his depth? I have discussed this subject before here and while I have not fully shifted from the points I raised in that
article, I am open-minded enough to look at possibilities.
The biggest issue I have is the
players – the attitude on the pitch seems to be of a team who know this season
is a total dead rubber. And that was reflected by young Kyle Hutton and Darren
Cole who recently took to Twitter to brag about their brief training sessions
followed by the life of Riley lazing at home.
Rangers players, by and large,
just do not appear to care about this season. And the truth is, can you blame
them? Us supporters would be willing to give our right arm to fight for the
cause at Ibrox but these players live in a different world – they have never
worked 9-5 in an office or as a binman, or any other honourable day-job
profession like their supporters have – all they know is football so they think
like a footballer. And with no promotion this season McCoist could strike a
tactical masterplan and by-and-large the players would fail to follow it
through general apathy.
It is not that McCoist cannot exert
his authority, it is just the circumstances are, to use a crude word, rubbish.
No promotion, no glory, no Europe, no new
signings except Bosmans, and a minimum of 3 or 4 years at this kind of level
before any return to the premier hierarchy in the country, if it ever happens.
It is hard to motivate players
who have absolutely nothing to play for. They will not be joined by any new
faces bar pre-contract Bosmans until January 2014. They will pick up the third division trophy only to
have to do it all over again for another season. They will not enjoy
continental competition for just over 2 seasons. Could Guus Hiddink or Jose
Mourinho get the best out of players who have absolutely nothing to inspire
them, week-in-week-out?
Even Rangers supporters are now
starting to stay away – the apathy on the pitch has spread to the stands and
attendance numbers are dwindling. It happened in the 80s during that horrific
lean spell and it is happening again now. If the team just is not performing,
the fans will not continue to shell their hard-earned cash on watching them.
So, to sum this rather depressing
blog up, I do not blame McCoist alone. I accept he has failings, but he is only
part of the problem, not the sole cause. Until the club finds itself in a
position where it has something to play for, this horrendous football will
continue. Yes, the team has produced a few fine displays. Of course it has –
but motivation has to be constant for those to be consistent.
And inspiration is hard to come
by at Ibrox these days.

1 COMMENT

  1. Can't believe I've just read the above!!

    Too right our squad are not 'plumbers and joiners on £40- a week' – they are professional footballers on money most of us can only dream of and their lack of professionalism is truly shameful!

    If McCoist lacks the authority and is incapable of instilling that in them then he deserves his P45 as much as they do!!

    Ian, Hove

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