20 in a Row, Here We Go

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It goes without saying season
2012/2013, despite winning the league, was a disappointment for Rangers. So
many star names had failed to deliver, with mediocre performances a real
regularity for the Ibrox club. Indeed, it is a long and distant memory now but
it was not till the very end of last October that the side even managed to win
away from home in the league, a 2-0 victory over Clyde
at Broadwood popping that particularly unwanted cherry.
Many high-profile signings failed
to shine, such as Kevin Kyle, and Francisco Sandaza, both of whom departed for
pastures new long ago. Other, less-known signings like Anestis Argyriou
(currently without a club) also proved to be a mismatch for the club.
Meanwhile, some big-name recruits who remained also had rather sub-standard
campaigns last season. It would not be unfair to suggest that the likes of
Emilson Cribari, Ian Black, and David Templeton struggled to cope with life at
Ibrox and this, along with the residual shock factor of life in Division 3 led
to the side simply not delivering convincingly on the pitch.
Fast-forward to today; not only
has the side lost just one match this entire campaign in all competitions, not
only has it won 20 straight matches in all competitions since that reverse to
Forfar Athletic at Station Park in the League Cup, but it has achieved a
post-war record of 15 straight league wins to top League One by a country mile.
15 points over our nearest rivals Dunfermline Athletic (who dropped more points today), who are also an
‘ex-SPL’ side.
Further to this, a ridiculous 59
goals scored in the league alone, with only 7 conceded, which averages out at an
astonishing 4+ goals a match.
There is also the conundrum that
we are already spoiled for choice in choosing a Player of the Year so far, with
the likes of Bilel Mohsni, Lee Wallace, Lewis MacLeod, Nicky Law, Ian Black,
and Jon Daly having absolutely stellar seasons up to this point.
And last but not least was Nicky
Clark’s absolutely fantastic 4-goal showing V Forfar last Wednesday which, if it is to
continue, would certainly propel him into consideration for the above acclaim
over the coming months too.
The night and day contrast
between this season and last is truly ludicrous. Last season fans regularly
(and rightly) complained about a dreadful standard of football, and that while
the team was getting the results and still won the league with plenty of
headroom, the displays were not matching the scores.
Now, I would be the first to
admit Ian Black is not Sergio Busquets, nor is Nicky Law Andres Iniesta. Jon
Daly, bless him, is no Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
The performances are not 100%
flowing football and incredible goals. To achieve this would be a level mere
mortals are rarely capable of. But any Rangers fans disgruntled by the stats,
the overall displays and the individual performances as well as the scores is
clearly too hard to please and might want to look at Sacchi’s Milan of the late
80’s to have their demands satisfied.
I am also not saying Ally McCoist
is working wonders, because, of course, he does have a very fine squad now and
still makes some curious managerial decisions I personally raise the odd
eyebrow at.
But that said, is there really
any argument against records being broken, and a single defeat all season?
Rangers, on the pitch at least,
are currently in a very good place. Even the occasional sub-par team display
still yields a moment of magic or two as the quality of the likes of Daly and
Law shines through to win the 3 points.
Moreover, a Scottish Cup Fifth
round tie v Ayr or Dunfermline awaits and all
being pure and holy a place in the quarter finals beckons.
Things will change when the team
is back in the SPL, it will not be a walk in the park.
For now though, what Rangers are
doing on the pitch is more than enough.