Why the break has come at a perfect time for Rangers


Few Rangers fans would deny the side has endured a bumpy start to life back in the SPL. While not quite plummeting to unfathomable depths of awful, nevertheless the team has stuttered badly, failing to pick up the pre-Old Firm form which served Mark Warburton’s men so well last season.

Post that colossal result at Hampden, Rangers’ displays have been erratic, inconsistent, flat, and lacking in the flowing football we previously expected, spoiled as we probably were at the beginning of last season with borderline cricket scores.

The first four league matches have given us four unimpressive displays, with glimpses of what the side could do only appearing now and then. Indeed, both the players and Warburton himself have been on the sharp end of some real criticism, both from this site and many, many others, for the first real time since he took charge last July.

The Magic Hat was bewildered by the negative reaction to losing at home to St Johnstone last year, but he will be a lot less confused over the critique this time around, admitting performances just have not lived up to expected standards and conceding he himself is struggling a little to figure it out.

Hence, this upcoming international break, on the back of a painful draw at Rugby Park, could not have come at a better time.

Mark Warburton and David Weir absolutely need to take this chance to regroup – both their own philosophies and the team’s direction. They have a solid 10 days to re-plan (including using the Linfield friendly), think about how to go forward, and how to get round SPL sides with infinitely more ease than the disappointing results we are presently witnessing.

Summer break allowed Rangers to recruit – to get some momentum with the League Cup, and let the new players bed in as much as possible.

The commencement of the SPL season though has shown exactly what Warburton’s tactics lack, what the players need to give, and frankly the damage from both sides’ failures at this level could have been so much worse than 8 points from 12.

Hence Warbs now truly understands what is needed at this level. He has a week and a half to go back to the drawing board and the training ground and try new things. To get as many players on board with his philosophies and willing to run through brick walls for him.

He surely now realises his public sentiments of playing the same way in the SPL as he did in the Championship simply will not work. His lack of utilising alternative tactics has hurt Rangers, but nowhere near as much as it could have, as have the underwhelming displays from a great number of players who have not adjusted to the higher level the way many expected.

Both of these have 10 days to fully process the SPL – what it demands, what it expects, and what they need to deliver in order to return a credible league campaign.

Naturally the Old Firm match has simply come too early. Celtic are overwhelming favourites on their own patch to take the three points. Expectations are low for this one.

But Rangers fans need to know their side will fight for them, that their side will be guided correctly by the manager, and that even if we do lose, there are signs of progress, something to work with.

This break is perfect to allow the critical adjustments to be planned and implemented. Because if Warbs does not decide to try something different, this is going to be a long, long season.


  1. linfield friendly will do more harm than good the top 6 in the spfl are way better than linfield. a friendly is ok for during the off season but certainly not to prepare for a old firm match. There is a gulf between celtic and linfield and a display against linfield will mean nothing to celtics quality and pace that will humiliate our defence!

  2. It's not rocket science, all he needs to do is drop a defensive midfielder and replace him with an attacking option and keep the high tempo pressing game from last season going . If he can't see joey Barton is slowing our game down then he's gonna cost us in the league

  3. I think he is too stubborn to change, and am i the only one that sees there is a hint of the "old pals act" forming that we saw with McCoist and McDowell? we simply cannot defend and the 3 CBs we have are not up to task in the SPL and there is no sign of a CB coming in. I think he is waiting for Crooks to get fit to play him at CB as the Lescott (non)deal seems to highlight that we have reneged on the financial agreement so there is probably no money left in the pot after we bought Garner, the striker being the priority over the CB even when Miller is the obvious 1st choice, this highlights the stubbornness.

  4. 4 games in and negativity has definitely crept into Rangers and our support this season. The Hamilton game fell flat when we, the supporters, put everything we had into the game. Dundee and Motherwell wins were awful and we forget the chances they created against us.

    I'm very nervous to say the least about the Old Firm game in a couple of weeks! Celtic is a team that scraped through to the group stage after being beaten by Red Imps and Beer Sheva and I'm still not confident especially watching our performances so far this season, one game against Linfield won't change that.

    I'd love Warbs to play Walters way in this game, it got us to a European final so it can't be that bad. Just after some flexibility as seen as we've been found out in all four league games.

  5. Anon 19:46

    The money is needed, having had to pay a bigger deposit to Preston than was anticipated.

    With this and the Lescott fiasco, add Senderos to that, it's a feckin shambles in tge run up to tge Celtic game.

    So Garner in, Waghorn out and the balance of the monies going towards daily working capital.

    If Puma and SD get serious we are well and truly fecked……….thanks Dave.

    When will those still backing the board get their head our of the sand…….money worries already and it's not September yet.

    It's going to be a long, hard winter.

  6. there is nothing wrong with Warbs's philosophy or the system our team uses and to say it simply does not work at this level is utter shite.
    The problem is he doesnt have the quality of player to execute the system on the pitch.
    I for one wasnt shouting about the so called coup of capturing Barton at the beginning of the season and for me he along with 2 clueless CBs and an over the hill one are the problem.
    If we can see it, Warbs can see it and rest assured when everyone is fit and if we can secure a decent CB before the window closes a lot of the problems will be addressed.

    To think we were gunna win the league this season shows just how deluded some of our support is.
    Spend spend spend is the cry once again after a precieved poor start yet we havnt lost a game.
    Its what going on in the Academy that matters, development before results, learning to play football the right way, the type we all loved and enjoyed last season and bedding in a philosophy.
    My fellow bears we need to start thinking long term instead of being short sighted, paitence is required if we are to once again be the dominant force in scottish football and a threat in europe.
    Keep the faith WATP

    • Think it you that is deluded Billy – There has been something wrong with Warbs philosophy since he came into the club and that's lack of plan B. Any manager who only knows one tactic is NOT the man for Rangers. You say it's the lack of quality? so that means not only does he only have one tactic but he doesn't know how to sign players that can play it? The minute he let Darren Mcgregor(not the best granted)walk out the door to out closest rivals so he could bring in the even worse Rob Keirnan then there was clearly something wrong. After Hibs tore us apart in the cup final him and Weir decided the man to bring that missing pace and power back to the defence was a 37 year dud released from his championship club? MOH, the one player who no fullback could stop hitting the byline or driving into the box last year when he was at St Johnston including Celtic is signed and left on the bench because he prefers our Tav to play ther AND fullback? 3 transfer windows, 20 odd players and one of the worst defences in the clubs history? The academy who can't attract kids like Matthew Knox or the Queenspark kid? The academy who would rather train up guys like Oduwa or Zelalam for their clubs rather than give the young Scots a chance? The academy that is now resorted to signing kids on LOAN from Raith Rovers? The long plan that is nothing like the long plan he spoke about when he first came in?

      And you say IF we can secure a decent CB…IF?? a manager who prides himself on getting things done early now desperatley trying to sign a hasbeen or find some other free transfer kicking about? Sorry that is NOT the kind of organisation and tactics I think should be manager of our great football club. £12,000 a week into the bargain…no thanks!

  7. Bristol City have just sold a striker for big bucks so there may be some mileage in the Waghorn story.

    If money is as tight as it appears to be then anything over £1m will be welcomed by King and the board as, apart from Club 1872, there is no other serious monies coming in till May next year.

    If SD and Puma get serious and come after us for breach of contract all bets are off.

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