Can Mark Warburton change?


If we go back to the start of the ‘Month of Death’ last year when Rangers had two clashes with Hearts and one with Aberdeen in conjunction with a trip to McDiarmid Park and hosting our Green and White chums from across the city, expectations were pretty low for results.

Few expected much from December, given the form we went into the month in, and when Robbie Neilson’s Hearts tore us to pieces at the start of the run, most of us feared the worst.

But then something dramatic happened – in the space of a few days Mark Warburton decided to rip up his 4-3-3 and try a 4-1-4-1 against Aberdeen with Tavernier in midfield along with the surprise selection of Miller alongside him.

It worked wonderfully and despite a late goal, Aberdeen were well-beaten by a better side.

It happened again against Ian Cathro’s Gorgie side, as the-then new Hearts boss found his debut ripped to shreds by another piece of lateral thinking from the home manager as Miller retained his place in the middle as did Tavernier, and it blew the guests away.

Mark Warburton had found new angles and setups to deploy his players in, and it was working. He was finally showing the flexibility it takes, and the team even defended better.

Unfortunately, those two matches were as good as Rangers’ season has been, which itself is as indicting of Warbs’ reign as anything else. He showed real cunning, real appetite to try something new, but following the success of it Rangers reverted to type, with every single display since they beat Hearts being frankly garbage. Six matches in a row including St Johnstone, Hamilton and Celtic have just been completely rotten, four of them being SPL and only two of them being won. The other win of course was the weekend’s latest embarrassment against Motherwell.

The frustration of Warburton showing flexibility, and altering his tactic for the match in question, springing surprises and thinking outside the box; only to then bail on it and go back to what does not work.

That Rangers have only won three of their last six matches is absolutely atrocious and equally accurate to the very 50% average season currently underway. That those Aberdeen and Hearts displays and results showed how good Warburton’s tactics could be is even worse. In both matches Rangers’ formation was coherent, clear, and showed the fluidity in attack that it showed solidity in defence. Then Rangers went to Martin Canning’s lot and structure went out the window, with a complete loss of organisation, no apparent formation at all (it changed with the wind) and absolutely imagination-less football.

So, to answer the title? Yes, Mark Warburton can change. He has done so now and again and it has benefited the team. But then it is as if he wants to prove his own methods are the best and goes back to what used to work for him last season and at Brentford, and invariably it does not work now. Not in the SPL.

Stubbornness is a big enemy of Rangers’ manager, and a refusal to acknowledge his own errors. If only he would try to persist with the more fluid thinking rather than sticking with his stale ideas Rangers would be better for it.

In Warbs We Trust?


  1. Unfortunately I don't trust him and weir anymore I just wouldn't it's hard to believe all the players who have come in this season pretty much none have improved us. He's contently praising Jason Holt I just don't see it myself. I know were not going to spend any money this month and I don't think I would trust them with it anyway it shouldn't take this long and still not see we need to strengthen the defence or the fact that we have scored so few goals no that isn't a problem there but midfield it's only midfield they seem to be worried about Right now. We can have all the possession of the ball it means nothing unless we actually score goals with it teams know just let us tap it about and soon enough we'll make a mistake and they'll get a chance to score it just isn't good enough for me. Frank deboer hopefully we'll get him in the summer heard a few folk talking about this I honestly can't see it happening but that is who we should be looking at

  2. Nope he or DW can not change new manager may do it with the players we have look at selltic BR made dead wood come alight and then he set them on fire.

  3. You've answered your own question there mate,he can change but its not the way he wants to play.It would appear performance matters more than points,that's ok at academy level where incidentally I think Warburton belongs.Its been said a million times we need a hard physical presence in the middle but its not part of his philosophy.The guy is still an novice getting to cut his teeth at our glorious Club. I saw Pardew mentioned somewhere,never happen but that's who I'd love to see manage us.

  4. It seems the use of stats here is as fickle as the opinions expressed by this site on a regular basis. Looking at things in a more realistic way we have won 8 of the last 10 competitive games, including against our 2 closest rivals for 2nd spot, drawn 1 and lost 1 to a Celtic team which painful as it might be is currently streets ahead of us. These are not stats that prove his system isn't working or justify your criticism. Just over a month ago you were praising Warburton and stated "watching Rangers adapt has become a pleasure". Since that game we have W2 D1 and L1. Not great but far from time to panic. In the same post you acknowledge that Garners contribution to the change in tactics is vital to how the new system is working but you ignore the fact that in effect he could only play in 2 of the last 5 games. It's hard for Warburton to continue a system that he doesn't have the players for, even so he's still winning.
    Seems your dislike of Warburton is only matched by your long standing and unjustified hatred of Dave King.
    Warburton has a vision and under the circumstances he has worked wonders for the club. Of course he's not perfect and as a relatively inexperienced manager he has to learn fast at a club that rightly can't accept second best but we have to be realistic. The job at hand is enormous but having our own supporters on his back and even suggesting replacements (Frank de Boer and Pardew, really!)when we are winning is not helping the cause in any way.

  5. Putting the group of fans aside who bizarrely think Warburton is doing a good job – because there is no point trying to debate facts with them, most fans now recognise that Warburton is the wrong man and the wrong time.

    I think the board really believed they had selected the right man and that he was capable of backing up his words with results. Surely even they, at an absolute minimum, have doubts over him.

    I would suggest that the lack of funds made available, in a window where every pundit neutral or otherwise thinks we need to add some quality, points to a board that have doubts. Some might say we are 'skint', however the reality is we can't afford not to spend some money, the current squad is simply not capable of a real championship challenge.

    I believe the board not longer have complete faith but lack the funding, ideas and leadership to make the change we desperately need.

    • i also thought he was the right man but after what stubbs done to him over allen plus cup final plus stokes celtic lent them stokes to put one over us and he let it happen since then he's been very lucky he's still in a job ,sell joe garner half price pay off warburton weir .i don't think them two will ever be in a winning team against celtic that east end mob have never laughed so much .

  6. Surely everyone can see he is not the man to lead us back to the top, i sit shaking my head in disbelief at what we are doing in most matches. He may be a nice bloke but he is not a good manager he has to go, sooner the better

  7. The hatred for Warburton is staggering. Yet we condemn any one who boos at Lee Wallace in a Scotland top as he is "one of our own".

    Only on this site do i see people saying "we won, but i wish we lost so the manager would be off"!

    Davie – "We are winning games and second in the league to a Celtic team in unbelievable form at the moment"
    Barry – "Aye, but i wish we would keep losing games, so we could get a new manager who would take us closer to Celtic"
    Davie – "You mean second place, where we are just now??"

    We are in the middle of building something, the time to judge is next season (or the end of this if we don't finish second), not January.

    Glagow Rangers – Where winning is not enough for fans.

    Second post on this thread, wonder if this one will get posted

    • no hatred here guy is a nice guy wish him a,t,b at his next club were in the middle of building something are you joking we will need to offload a entire team and start again with a new manager we've been a laughing stock for the last five years celtic will break every record this year they might beat us 6 times in one year as there is no fight in that team warburtons fault .only thing rangers have got just now is our magnificent support we have waited long enough wee need fight attitude .

    • Some people seem to have very short memories on this site. Do people forget the state of the club that Warburton took over just one and a half seasons ago. We had been lucky to scrape into the Championship play offs after finishing 3rd and ended up getting thumped 6-2 by a team that was second worst in the SPL and which had scored 38 goals in 38 matches. Warburton started with next to nothing and after winning the Championship in style, winning one cup and losing in the final of another, he has taken us to second in the Premiership. Your right we have been a laughing stock for much of the last 5 years but it was us who were laughing for most of last season and Warburton can't be blamed for the shambles that came before him. The club and the fans were at our lowest ebb until Dave King took over and made Warburtom manager. Almost immediately we regained a wee bit of pride in our team and club largely because of the "possession! possession! possession!" style of play that saw us dominate teams. What sort of fans criticize their manager for trying to play quality football and still managing to win the vast majority of games – unbelievable!

      Anyone who believed we were going to dominate the Premiership on our first season back was naive or just plain stupid and if you can't see the progress made under Warburton your just not paying attention. This is still a work in progress and to end it now would be disastrous for the club. What more could we have realistically expected 18 months ago?
      And if the magnificent support you talk about has the attitude of many on this site then God help us all.

  8. dont tnink he can change if wee the fans know his team I'm sure managers know what he's up to .to be fair isn't a lot you could actually fall asleep watching his teams .hes bought picked players all to light weight

  9. Thers no hatred towards warburton at all every1s only going on wat they see, never mind last 8 games cos that makes the people that want change look as if they're band wagon jumpers. going back to after the old firm Scottish cup final after that game we've b average at best that's why hearts are on our tails with Aberdeen who have a game on hand n st Johnston are still ther abouts, I was a big warburton fan n think he's a good guy but watchin every 2nd week fae ibrox n most games that are on t.v I am sick of the same mistakes in defence don't need to mention names , midfield is to light n creative enuf, the persistence with the 4-3-3 which isn't working, the constant over playing possession! possession! Possession! Is boring me to death. He's had four transfer windows n Thers no sign of progress. I wish he could turn it around but I don't have much confidence in that. It's just my honest opinion I more than any GERS fans want b all positive but it's not 1 small thing it is many and they never get fixed so I don't see any other option.

  10. It's really weak to label legitimate concerns about Warburton as "hatred". I dislike his arrogance but unsaved hatred for really evil people…such as certain American politicians.

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