Why THIS shows how only the special can cope at Ibrox


Joe Garner, scored the winner on his debut for Ipswich Town.

Barrie McKay, scored the winner on his debut for Nottingham Forest.

Michael O’Halloran, scored the winner on his second debut for St Johnstone.

Martyn Waghorn, scored the winner on his debut for Ipswich Town.

Michael O’Halloran, scored a double against Motherwell in their second league outing.

There is a pattern here folks, and I am not sure if we are quite able to decrypt it…

I jest of course – in short, all significant attacking departures this summer all went on to excel for their new clubs. The social media reaction has been mixed, confused, amusing and a tad angry.

With respect to McKay, anger that the winger could or would not produce that quality at Ibrox. With regard Garner, frustration from some that the player’s strengths were perceived as not being played to at Ibrox. With regards O’Halloran, who knows. And with regards Waghorn, again, no one knows.

But it really can all be broken down to one simple rule. The pressure and demands of playing for Rangers require more than just ability. It requires more than just pace. It requires more than just strength. It requires more than just positional sense. It requires more than just a good shot.

No, playing for Rangers is as much about handling the pressure of playing for Scotland’s Greatest Club as it is about being good enough.

There are many good players from lesser clubs who have made the grade at Ibrox. Steven Naismith (Kilmarnock) an obvious example. For his faults, Nacho Novo (Dundee) did himself proud enough too. And of course back for the much older Bears, Slim Jim (Raith Rovers) did not bad either.

But these guys had the mental strength to deal with what is expected of being a Ranger. It is not easy, and it is evident that many more fail than succeed. McKay simpy could not handle the SPL or playing for Rangers in it – in England at the lesser demands of Forest (with all due respect) he is absolutely fine. The same applies to O’Halloran – it just did not work out at Ibrox for many reasons, yet over in Perth he is sticking them away and playing like the guy Rangers signed.

Anyone who saw Joe Garner’s finish for Ipswich v Fulham will know he could easily have done that on a football level at Ibrox – but it takes more than just the ability.

These guys need the will to win, the mental strength to cope with what it takes to succeed in front of 50,000 people at Ibrox who expect the best – and it is clear that all of them have the ability in their legs to play good football, but not the psychological strength to do it under the Bill Struth Main.

We wish all of them the best in their careers (more or less) but it is just a fact of life that while they understood in most cases what it means to be a Ranger, and they do matter, that is quite different to delivering it on the pitch for us.


  1. We are too easy to play against, especially under warbs. The game that brought moh to rangers in the 1st place was playing St Johnstone in the cup when we were in the championship, a Premier league team playing 11 men behind the ball, win possession and pass to an area where moh can run and get through on goal. Tommy wright did a right job on rangers and showed everyone else how to play against us. that game alone was when warbs was found out and last season every team excluding the top 3/4 played the same tactics and he had no answers. We never had 11 bad players last year just a bad system with a stubern manager. We didn't play to any of our players strengths, garner feeds off a second striker when we only played one up top, moh excels when chasing the ball, we play the ball to feet, mackay had too much expectation on him, rangers play badly and it's the most talented players who get stick, vice versa when we play well which wasnt very often. Old firm in the cup springs to mind. Pedro should have man managed mackay better same as warbs should have man managed barton better. Waghorn was never lacking effort but he was really poor at one on one's, lack of confidence will do that to a player especially when 50k fans are screaming at you. Maybe Waghorn out of all the players never had the personality to handle rangers but the rest were badly purchased of managed imo.

    • Yes Martin. Spot on. Wasn't Simon Murray's play yesterday reminiscent of the way O'Halloran played against us and surprise, surprise the same result. Hibs played exactly as they did in the cup final. Double up on our pushover fullbacks and run the channels behind them. Stokes ran the lines more than the linesmen themselves, with acres of space.

  2. It's being able to do it consistently at Gers that's the problem for many players . Even way back , there were guy's like Alex Willoughby and Graham Fyfe who could be absolutely brilliant for a few weeks , then could do nothing right at times . To play for Rangers you need to be able to produce the goods on a regular basis and even if your form has dipped , still carry on getting stuck in and giving it everything . Even the great John Greig had periods when his form slipped a bit , but he never gave up or stopped trying , ever . To me that's what being a Rangers player is all about , especially when we don't have the money to spend on players that we once had . As big Jock Wallace used to say , a Gers player needs to have " character " as well as ability .

  3. The O'Halloran one is simple,at St Johnston he's not playing against two banks of four every week sitting in and has room to run over the top.The others simply couldn't bear the weight of the jersey.

  4. We wanted why to much from each one of them we never let any of them play there way how can you get goals from half way we sold players that are better than we have here now time to bed in no just showing them how much we loved them would have done

  5. As a support,We are way too criticle of our players, whether its on phone in's or these pages or twitter or Facebook or even at the stadium,we destroy their confidence, because make no mistake they read it & listen to it & sooner or later it has an effect on them.
    They are only human. The sight of josh windass trying to gee up a silent half empty ibrox on Saturday was a disgrace.
    We need to give these new guys at least till January before making judgements on them.
    If not, WE will turn them into the next lot of deadwood to be sold next year. We just cant go on like this year in year out turning our players into nervous wrecks while across the city they are wracking up titles.we Have to support the manager & the players as We are rapidly running out of options.

    • Absolutely agree. Yes, we can have a moan, but some of the criticism of our players (especially on other sites) is absolutely stunning. These are OUR Rangers players. Whatever their ability, they are trying for us and we repay with slaughter.

      If we have to put up with ludicrous reffing displays like Saturday, how must they feel about it?

      A bit more belief and not getting bullied by fannies like Stokes and McGeogh and we will be okay.

  6. I disagree JG

    We now have far BETTER players than we have had in the past six years.
    The players let go or sold ALL were pants in a Rangers Jersey, fact.

    I am so HAPPY that we now have Pedro in Charge tbh.
    This IS an intelligent fellow.

    Being RFC we have had MANY who just couldn't cut-it…. good players or not, for some reason they fellows just couldn't put up with the pressure put upon them which were WHAT EXACTLY ?
    To play well in every game.
    So the dud-types get found out and are moved on… such is life at A BIG CLUB/TEAM.

  7. Are you sure there are 50,000 baying fans every week to intimidate the players who you say can't handle it? Maybe tactics, luck, and a number of other factors also come into the equation? Anyway, although it's early days, we're pretty happy with our Rangers cast-offs so far. (Do you have any other bargains?) Oh, and by the way – Garner scored against Brum, not Fulham, whom we haven't played yet. But let's hope your mistake is a good omen. Having said all that, good luck for the coming season. Celtic need some competition; otherwise the SPL is just too boring.

    • Well there are certainly 50k fans every two weeks (even in 3rd division football) , And although our recent history and squad are poor the exceptions are still extremely high. What are the Ipswich exceptions this year ? Finish in the top half of the championship, or anything better than 16th. You cant really compare the pressures of playing for Rangers vs Ipswich. Enjoy our cast offs.

  8. Agree with Martin above- we never played a system that suited these players. And I'll go a step further and say that it was because Kenny Miller messes up any system with his wanderings. You can't play Waghorn/MOH on a wing and then expect them to do anything when they get there and find Miller farting about.
    I've been all over this forum with my Garner thoughts- he was a brilliant line leader but no-one ever supported him in the second striker role as Miller was arsing about in midfield. If it's because the managers tell him to do it, then fine, it's not his fault, it's the managers' fault (as in Saturday post-ridiculous red card when Miller went into midfield despite us having at least three proper midfielders on the bench).

    The same thing will happen with Herrera and probably Morelos for as long as Miller is in the starting line-up and trying to be Wayne Fricking Rooney.

    • hello mr. young…ive been follow following the gers since the late 50s…and quite honestly ive never come across such venomous attacks on one of our greatest ambassadors kenny miller…you have been continually attacking his efforts to turn our great club back towards success…why,,if you are a supporter would you want to continue doing this??? its so easy to be critical of players these days…but i wonder if you YOURSELF would put such effort into a game that kenny does…never mind about age…at 37 kenny is still a young man with a lot to give!!!no disrespect to yourself,,,but thats your opinion and in the words of a famous movie star"opinions are like assholes,everybodys got one" anyway my friend,sorry if ime over the top but i just want the rangers to prevail…and i would think by your devotion to this site IBROX NOISE that you would most certainly feel the same.

    • Thanks for the reply, camelonman- I've been following since my early childhood in the 70s at my Papa's knee and if you have read any of my posts on Miller and the team, you will know that I support every player that pulls on the blue jersey. I wander around other "Gers" sites and can't believe the vitriol they give the players; it is horrific.

      I wouldn't call my comments venomous, by the way- as I've said again and again, they are borne of frustration at how much of our good work is undone when the ball bounces off his knee or skies over the bar. As I said above, if the manager is pushing him into midfield, then it's the manager's fault, not his, but whoever's fault it is, it is damaging our progress.
      As I have also said countless times, I appreciate the man's work ethic and his workrate- untouchable. And yes, to be picked every week up front at 37 is great testament to the man. I just don't think it's good for our team.

      And I may as well add that he has driven me mad as a player for Scotland too! I've never seen him as a true Bluenose; maybe because he played over there, I don't know, but I don't have him in the same bracket as Greig, Cooper, McCoist…

      I still play, for my sins, at age 48 and I will be sad the day I have to stop, so I have nothing but respect for the man and his fitness and energy.
      I just find myself screaming at the game every time a forward is left up front to struggle alone while Kenny wanders.

      This is my complete opinion. My own opinion, honestly told, and being surrounded by non-Gers at work, this is the only place I get to let them out! Sorry if they offend, but they're just mine.

      See Garner scored again tonight after just four minutes for Ipswich… 😉
      All the best.

    • I should add- I'll stop now. No more sharing Miller frustrations – I'll keep them to myself or shout at the telly.

      And Waggy has just got Ipswich's second. 🙂

    • mr. young…thank you for your response…we are all as followers of this great football club possibly a bit on edge just now…all of us are intent on finding the solution to the progress of the club on our way back to the top…keep posting your opinion…it is appreciated.

  9. Do not often come on and disagree with your article so I wont, but I would suggest it misses the point of why players do or do not cope at the greatest club in Scotland, perhaps the world if we were given the riches in other leagues. Namely what a GOOD MANAGER gives to any player, either great or the potential to be great. If you think of some of the great players mentioned from our past in your article, then think of who managed them you start to see a potential reason, equally, if you paste the recent failures you see 2 pictures emerge that put simply suggest Warbs as we all know was terrible, Ped is destined to be exactly the same, the common reason, neither men could or can cope with Ibrox, did not know how to adapt, failed and suprise one is gone, the other certainly knows how to talk about some of the most obscure and ridiculous things, just useless at talking to his players about Football. J

  10. Good comment from Doug Young I wholly agree KM is an obstacle to playing flowing football , Keeping him on the park just to get an odd goal isn't good enough I thank him for his service but the team need to evolve without him

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