Why are our ‘losers’ their ‘winners’?


While a previous entry alluded to the players in question simply not having the heart or mental capacity to withstand the pressure which comes from being a Ranger, and while Chris Sutton’s joke tweet about Harry Forrester is as much a dig at us as usual by Mutton as it is anything else, unfortunately there really is a bit of a growing issue with Rangers’ attacking departures.

When it began with Joe Garner and Barrie McKay both scoring on their debuts, it was just a curious oddity, but for it to have persisted in both their cases plus continued on with the likes of Martyn Waghorn and Michael O’Halloran (whose form for St Johnstone has led to Scotland calls) truly starts to beg the question of why all these guys failed to hit the heights at Ibrox, yet are managing to do so at similar levels (if not higher) of football (if not club) since their exits.

Let us take a wee look at them case by case:

Joe Garner:

He has scored in three out of four Championship appearances, amassing an impressive near one in one scoring rate. He also managed five goals in pre-season.

Martyn Waghorn:

By comparison at the Tractor Boys, Waggy has put away a clean four goals in four league appearances. Enough said.

Barrie McKay:

Was never a huge scorer but managed one on his debut and another one later. Is said to be playing like he is on heat.

Michael O’Halloran:

This one is turning into a joke. Has scored four in four at Saints and his performances so impressive calls have sincerely been made for him to get a call up to the national side.

Harry Forrester is the latest departure and one can probably bet safe money he will either have a cracking debut or a goal. Or both.

Honestly, we do not even know where we are going with this article, but there is this worrying underlying fear at endemic issues at Ibrox which simply do not exist at other clubs.

Something which stops players producing anything like their best – whether that is the pressure of playing for the Famous, or that dichotomy we discussed the other day, or something deeply rotten in coaching at Auchenhowie which has been a problem since Walter left (this issue of players doing way better elsewhere has been going on since late 2011), we do not know.

But if yet another ‘loser player’ goes on and barnstorms for his new club while our players struggle against the likes of Ross County and Hearts, well, your guess will be as good as ours, folks.


  1. Joe Garner is a good centre forward who never scores enough goals for whoever he plays for. Joe and Morelos could have been good together. Martyn Waghorn is not a bad player, he just lost a bit of confidence and O'Halloran gets a free role to use his pace at St Johnstone, not stuck out as a right winger only. Barry should have been a 6-month-loan-deal at Nottingham until Pedro is sacked.

  2. I would point out that this is not actually a recent phenomenon.

    Ross McCormack left Rangers long before 2011

  3. Not playing against 10 men in the box evert week will surely make a difference, look at the time and space O'Halloran was afforded for each of his goals! That, the weight of the jersey and our expectancy is too much for the lesser men.

  4. It comes down to different play styles, none of these other teams have to put up with opposition who put 11 behind the ball. We'll come good. How about an article focusing on the positive?

    • Fuk UR joking!!!
      Unless U have rope to hing from the rafters or a sword to cut the manager's heed off its a no go!!
      1W 1D 1L and it's fuking Armageddon.
      I'm on the same page as U, we will come good of that I have no doubt.
      We will have learnt so so much from our 2 games at Ibrox that will put us in good standing in months to come.
      Positivity & Backing all at Ibrox Required.
      Certainly not Doom & Gloom!!!

  5. We haven't had a manager who can recognise the talent of a player and coach him to his full potential…simple as that.

    • To goleador- barry mckay is playing for one of those managers you mention, waghorn & garner play for mick mccarthy another failed manager, so your view doesn't stack up.its just more negativity on these pages as usual, when they were there everyone wanted rid of them. As fans we really have to look in the mirror, I know it was disappointing the last 2 weeks but booing a new team off at ibrox 3 weeks into the season ? How long before the new players (who were good at their previous clubs)retreat into their shells & have to be sold. Lets stay strong & support the manager & players. All of them not just our favourites,
      Let the suttons & hartsons the bbc etc snigger away, not so long ago they were in our shoes & they all know we will be back as these things go in cycles so they're putting the boot in while they can.
      Ps spark mcd is spot on.

  6. The simple fact is both Warburton and Pedro play a sterile style of football were possession is the most important thing and it is that footballing philosophy which provides no opportunities for strikers. The amount of time wasted by continually passing the ball far far away from the penalty area is embarrassing. Add to the fact of playing two wingers with one striker ensures all the action will be out on the wings and not in the penalty area. This tactic also ensure we are overun in the middle of the park leaving no room for the likes of Dorran to support the strikers.

  7. If you look at the places they are all playing, there is not the same level of pressure on these guys are their new clubs. They don't have 50 thousand fans ontop of them every other week. I also think, if you look at the at the way hearts played us ten men in defence then the afore mentioned players would not have had the space they can exploit in they way they can at their clubs now.

    Looking at them now free scoring is hard but when they can't do it for us then they should not have out crest on their chest

  8. The league McKay, waghorn and Garner are in gives players a lot more time on the ball and don't sit eleven men behind the ball? As for o'halloran don't think he wanted to be here when the bread man was here? Never mind Pedro.

  9. It's a combination of a number of things, most mentioned above. All of them were slagged off to buggery on social media by fans and I don't think that can have no effect. That is symbolic of the pressure of the shirt, but I never thought it bothered the likes of Garner. Waggy did look like he lacked a bit of confidence latterly in front of goal, but was always a willing runner and worked hard.

    What is interesting for me is the style thing- we never played to these players strengths. That's fair enough, but why buy them in the first place?

    I have an Ipswich-supporting mate, who is delighted, unsurprisingly. When Joey moved there in June, he asked me for my opinion.
    This is what I wrote:

    "I was a bit gutted to see Joey Garner go, to be honest. He suffered from poor management/tactics, although he is a bit of a nutter.
    Basically, when he crosses the white line, you get 100%. He isn't afraid of putting the boot/head/elbow in and noises up opposition constantly. Other teams hate playing against him, he's a pest. When he came on against Celtic, they had four men on him as soon as he got the ball and they pecked and poked at him, desperate to get a reaction, as he is likely to react. He probably should have been sent off twice for us and got more yellow cards than goals.

    I wanted to see him paired with another striker, but he was always up front alone waiting for crosses that never came. When they came, he scored. He's not the tallest, 5 10 maybe, but is incredible in the air. When he gets a good cross, he invariably scores.
    He is absolutely SUPERB at flicking the ball on. 99 times out of 100 he won the ball in the air against much bigger defenders, but then had to chase his own flick on.

    Definitely suited for the rough and tumble of the Championship, I would put money on double figure goals but also double figure yellows and probably a sprinkling of reds."

    Looking good on my double-figure prediction so far. 🙂

    The "ten men behind the ball" thing does affect the likes of McKay and MOH, but to be honest, their creative (and often unpredictable) urges are what tends to beat that mentality. Being predictable (which we are) is too easy to defend against. Flinging the ball into the box all day long is meat and drink for the likes of Berra and Soutar and even at that, we didn't manage too many quality crosses.

    MOH, McKay and Waggy were all used on the wing; Waggy on the right, though a left-footed player and McKay on the left, though a right-footed player.

    Add to that the "go wherever I want" role of Mr Miller and….

    end of.

  10. If pedro caixinha is worth his salt and is still in the privileged position as our manager,then he should be monitoring very closely,michael o'halloran's progress at st.johnstone and if it continues,bring him back to rangers in january!!

  11. If pedro caixinha is worth his salt and is still in the privileged position as our manager,then he should be monitoring very closely,michael o'halloran's progress at st.johnstone and if it continues,bring him back to rangers in january!!

  12. Fuck them all they are all no longer rangers players(atm) quite simply rangers were too big for all and they all werent good enough none of the players who left apart from crooks could complain about a lack of getting a chance

  13. I'll just remind you Jmf that michael o'halloran IS still a rangers player!You say crooks was the only 1 not given a chance!I totally disagree with you as MOH wasn't given a chance,as in a good run of games!Thats both warburton and caixinha failed to get the best out of michael o'halloran and play to the guy's strengths!Tommy wright certainly knows how to get the very best out of him!

  14. Its a little annoying for sure but these lads all can pay a wee bit , and apart from Waggie they didn't get full chance I like the role O'Halloran has been asked to play at St Johnstone it brings out his best not stuck on the wing where he is ineffective . The rest are scoring because the weight of playing in the blue at Ibrox has been lifted , as for Barry he had already spat the dummy !! Not sure if this young boy from Man City will cut it either as Dalcio struggled .. If he can get even close to that wee twat Patrick Roberts then good Oh !!

  15. All of them are just not Rangers class. If they were all playing in the EPL and scoring with ease, then I would agree they were our loss, but come on, lets get real, the English Championship?, are we comparing our club in the class of those teams. I'm certainly not.
    That is their level to play, not ours, therefore they do not belong or ever have belonged in a Rangers jersey.
    O'halloran just can't handle the big arena. He doesn't play against a 10 man defence either. He is just wrong for Rangers and St Johnstone can keep him.
    We need top level players to compete against the beggars and capable of beating the 10 man defences in most of our games this season.

  16. This is a tough riddle to solve because there are multiple factors at play here, some of which are common to a lot of clubs and some of which are unique to Rangers.

    (1) weight of expectations / expected quality — definitely a contributing factor, but not necessarily decisive in all cases IMO.
    (2) 10/11 men behind the ball — huge contributing factor and tough to mitigate. That said, a good coach can overcome this if he has the right players. Look at Celtic both before/after Rodgers took over. Outside of Sinclair and Dembele, their attacking line is the same, and yet Rodgers got way more goals from the group he inherited than Ronny ever did. Or conversely, look at what happened to ManU when David Moyes took over and changed tactics with the same squad.
    (3) players being played out of position and/or asked to play to their weaknesses rather than their strengths — this is another huge contributing factor and in some cases (Garner and MOH among them) the decisive issue IMO.

    I'm not on Pedro's bandwagon by any means, but I do think he has an actual plan in this regard and is trying to get players that can effectively play the system he's installing. So at least there's some method to his madness. Likewise, I'm not convinced that any of the guys we let go will perform any better if we call them back in (the guys on loan anyway) – the same underlying issues at Ibrox are still there and none of them have been adressed.

    For my 2¢, I would have preferred that the board, or now the DOF, establish a playing style with attributes for each position and stick with it. If we change managers again, which seems inevitable, we won't have to rip up the entire squad for a new playing style; rather we can simply invest in better players and the manager can work on improving the skills/performance of the squad he inherits. Maybe that's a bit naive, but I think we, organizationally, will make a lot more progress following a plan like that.

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