Analysis: where Rangers need strengthened

Warburton has some thinking to do.

Scottish Cup Final result notwithstanding, Rangers desperately need new blood in the team.

This season’s squad has arguably achieved beyond its weight and clearly exceeded expectations, as admitted by manager Mark Warburton; but to ensure we keep progression at a steady rate, improvements in some key areas remain absolutely vital in order to launch a credible assault on the Premiership next season.

Let us take a look at the areas which simply ache for supplements:

Central defence;

This really is the obvious one. While Rangers’ backline has by no means been a sieve, it has been exposed with ease more than it should, and has looked cumbersome and off the pace on numerous occasions. The St Johnstone result highlighted its vulnerability, and while the squad recovered from that result to record stunning victories against Dundee and Celtic, the question of the central duo has been of some considerable contention. No pairing has really impressed, and while there was a brief period of shut outs or low goal shippings some months back, it has never been sustained. Warburton has admitted he needs four decent options at the back for next season, but it remains to be seen how many of them will be the existing trio of Dominic Ball, Danny Wilson, and Rob Kiernan.

Defensive midfield;

Rangers went through an entire season without one single recognised DM – Andy Halliday deputised there for the majority, while Dom Ball made a few appearances as well in that slot, but such vague implementation will not cut it next term as Warburton only too well knows. He does have the incoming Matt Crooks as (previously) presumed first-choice DM, but he puzzlingly confessed in a recent press conference that DM is a priority position and he was still looking for someone. Either he forgot he had Crooks, or he does not see him as the solution. Whatever the outcome is remains to be seen.


Another slot Rangers are definitely not blessed in. Nicky Clark simply does not cut it, and Martyn Waghorn is more of a powerhouse forward than a pure goal getter, despite his impressive tally. The only real quality up front as pure number 9 is Kenny Miller, who is not getting any younger. His manager knows this, and presumably is on the hunt for at least one more finisher to add to the squad.

In terms of full backs, Rangers are surely happy enough for now with Tavernier and Wallace, and central midfield sees options aplenty for sure, as do the wings and attacking midfield. It is quite conceivable that more armaments will be sought for these positions in light of the upgrade to the SPL, but they are definitely not as high priorities as the categories highlighted.


  1. Your analysis is spot on yet we only seem to be linked with even more wingers or midfielders.I want to see a no nonsense centre back with an out and out striker as priority targets.Next season he is going to need what the team has not got at the moment and that is a physical presence

  2. I keep hearing this we need a defensive holding midfielder. Just want to put a question out there. With the style of football now being played do we NEED one or do we just get one because everyone else has one.

    • I think we do need one, even with our style of play, there will be periods in most games were a DM will be crucial.

    • Have you watched Rangers this season? High full backs, both centre backs play wide. A holding midfielder should plug the gap between the cb's. How many times have we been exploited down the middle with fast counter attacks due to Wilson's lack of pace and no cover from the DM. Priority position due to the way we play, not because its fashionable to have a holding midfielder!

  3. I agree with everything that is in the article, however I'd like to put a different spin on some parts.
    I believe that this Rangers team have learned and grown together. They started of against ST Johnstone and although they out played them, we were well beaten. Then came Kilmarnock twice, again we out played them, but this time we won. Then came Dundee, Rangers were excellent. Finally came the champions of Scotland, Rangers to a ,an were faultless. For me Wilson is a big game player, whenever he has to give 100% concentration, he is on it. I think like a lot of this current team they get bored and sloppy against lesser opposition.
    Yes we need to strengthen, but we are almost there………..What a difference a year makes, Fir park anybody?


    • Iain you are correct about danny wilson…when he is on the big stage he shines but against lesser opponents he is too laid back…I dont like that…he should be taking kenny millars example and be playing for the jersey…you could also be right about boredom in the team…Ibrox noise never mentioned the goalkeepers position…that needs looked at as douglas has mentioned in the next post…wes foderingham is a nice guy but he is not good enough for Rangers… we need a goalie that will be better at going for high crosses into the box and have better positional sense on the goal line…anyway lets keep the faith…W&W should sort things out by the start of the new season…I look forward to it.

    • Rossiter is signing for us next week, he can play as CDM, and CM, don't know if Crooks will be in centre mid or Rossiter.

  4. Crooks has scored a fair few this year so suspect he probably plays a bit further forward than we originally thought? Would explain why still looking for DM.

    We need four first team players (2 x CB, 1 x DM, 1 x No.9) and probably three more versatile squad men – who plays full back if Tav or Wallace get injured??

    Agree that individually Wilson and Kiernan might be worth keeping, they haven't formed a strong enough unit or partnership so need to change it.

  5. In support of Douglas and the defence…

  6. i just hope we get the defence sorted out otherwise we are gonna get spanked, agree on crooks he does like to gte forward which is good as Halliday seems to be a bit goal shy at moment. Hope we raise out game for the Hibees, & batter em

  7. Agree with the article, however, as to the strengthening at wing and midfield, really to me it all depends on expectations going into next season. There will be said expectations from some fans to go up and immediately challenge for the title. If those are also shared by management, we are going to need a bit more quality in midfield and another decent winger for the formation MW plays. I dare say it all depends on budgets / allocation of that budget, coupled with if we can pick up a couple of bargains.

    • budget,,,has dave king not now going to invest his 30/50 million,,or have you just tippled?

    • Dave King stated how much it would take to get back to beating your shower. 30-50 million is a number plucked out of thin air. It included moneys to pay off Ashley etc. No serious Rangers supporters expected that amount to be spent on the playing side so go troll something else you sad sad person. A tipple might help you get over the fact that we are still live and kicking

    • Regardless whether the budget is five million or the less than likely fifty million – not that I mentioned such – I'd presume it is simple enough to understand the budget set would determine the amount and quality of players brought into the club. If you are going to bring up an unrelated point, you might want to avoid being deliberately disingenuous.

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