Friday, 8 May 2015

Are Rangers ready to rule Queens?


It has been one of the biggest debates, football-wise, regarding Rangers, pretty much since the Club was cast to Division 3. With all the ‘SPL-quality’ signings Rangers were making, along with the high-quality young players creeping through from Murray Park, there was a sincere feeling among some that despite being thrust into the lowest tier of Scottish football, Rangers had the second best squad in the whole country.

On the other hand, the performances themselves in Division 3 then League 1 poured ice cold water on this assumption, and brought some fans right down to earth about where Rangers were in the grand scheme of Scottish football. Their verdict; ‘miles off the SPL’.

So, here we are, a horrible season of pretty wretched football under previous management has seen Rangers slump to teams like Livingston and Alloa, not to mention all-new bogey side Queen of the South, and the arrival of Stuart McCall as new manager. His appointment has borne a small amount of fruit – marginally improved performances, some impressive results, but that continued fearful feeling of defensive fragility and attacking weakness has pervaded the upgrade.

And Queen of the South? As we now know, Rangers travel to Palmerston on Saturday attempting to do what they have simply been unable to all season – beat the Doonhamers, one unconvincing victory at Ibrox aside. They certainly have not come close to even a draw in Fife, never mind all 3 points.

James Fowler’s men have the Indian sign over Rangers, manager regardless, and somehow he seems to know how to set up v the Ibrox side and handle them. Two clean sheets at home with five goals dispatched shows the superiority Queens have at home when Rangers come to town.

Some have alluded to the plastic pitch, but McCall dismisses this;

“We trained on the artificial surface at Murray Park before we went down to Palmerston the last time and we ended up losing 3-0. So it didn’t exactly help us and being superstitious, it’s fair to say we won’t be doing that this time!”

And in 2014 Rangers strolled through New Douglas Park’s plastic pitch in the cup replay v Albion Rovers 2-0, so truly, artificial surfaces are not a valid excuse.

Tactics, formation and attitude are the only thing Rangers have to get right, and McCall has shown in the big matches that he is capable. He is yet to lose a match against a top three side, with two wins and a draw his record at that level. Add top four, and you get McCall’s only defeat as manager; at Palmerston.

While Rangers’ form going into this encounter could be better (two draws on the spin), psychologically two-legged ties are a totally different matter. Away goals count. And a draw at Palmerston would consequently be a very good result for Rangers.

Of course, a win would be even better…

4 comments:

  1. Away goals do not count.

    ReplyDelete
  2. All this astro voodoo is absolutely bollocks. It's 11 v 11 on any surface,, We have the quality to beat every team in these play offs, however, need 11 warriors in each of the 6 games, 100% tackling, 100% running, 100% blood, sweat and tears and make our own luck. The sheer disappointment with previous Palmerston games, is the attempts on goal,, we need to get behind them in the wings. We need to fight every game like a cup final,,cause bet your backside, the other teams will,, Get bloody stuck in from the start Rangers!!

    ReplyDelete
  3. McCall has brought a marginal improvement!!! Yer having a laugh. Improvement has been massive.

    ReplyDelete

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