Second chance for Rangers outcast

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If one Rangers player has failed to live up to the billing, reported salary and general reputation, it is Niko Kranjcar.

Rangers fans were getting an 80+ Croatian international with bags of top flight EPL experience, and in return have had fleeting appearances, disappointing performances and a worrying lack of general apparent fitness.

In short, the signing has been an extremely underwhelming one in light of the expectation of it, but with manager Graeme Murty favouring a bank of three behind a striker, and supplementing his options by at least two there over the January window, Kranjcar has been vocal about his qualities and contribution.

We proposed he, like one or two others, was feeling threatened by returning players and new arrivals, and was keen to make clear that he feels he still has a part to play.

And while it was only Fraserburgh, Niko Kranjcar finally gave a glimpse, at least to yours truly, of a little bit more of what he is capable of.

While it was not exactly vintage, he not only nearly scored following a neat piece of shimmying in the box, but managed to spray some decent passes around and look far more involved in a match than he has for a long time.

Indeed, his marker Ryan Christie had nothing but praise for the ex-Portsmouth man, doing his utmost to argue that for a player criticised for a lack of mobility, he certainly was far from stationary.

“People say Kranjcar is old now and doesn’t move about a lot. But when you’re marking him, trust me, he moves about a lot. He was good and was working a lot in front of the back four and behind me. So it was an absolute privilege to play against him, and I’m happy.”

Of course, some context to this. Fraserbrough are hardly Real Madrid, but then, Kranjcar was abysmal v Nierderkorn and they are barely any better than the Bellslea side. Furthermore, Josh Windass aside, no one exactly stood out bar him and the Croat, so this was hardly one where flowing football was easy to come by.

It is clear, from that display on a night where continental players might not have fancied it at all, that Kranjcar was trying to send a message to both supporters and his manager.

Something also worth noting is while Windass’ goals stole the show, it was Niko who set each and every one of them up. He really was trying to lay down a subtle marker and succeeded, to an extent.

While we all accept the guy’s legs are not what they were, and we still shudder at that horrendous display against Celtic, if his cameo in the Highlands is anything to go by, we are not done yet with his services and he believes there are a few of them left yet.

He is a good option to have, when in the mood – and while we will probably never see the player he was again, if he can squeeze out what he has left, it should be enough to do some damage now and again in the SPL.

13 COMMENTS

  1. Not good enough for Rangers turning up now and again,and keeping youth on the sidelines,and costing a fortune , get rid ASAP.

  2. its not a player like Kranjcar that Rangers need in the team its Ross McGrory or Ryan Jack who have not been covered for in the team especially Ross who's tackling and aerial attributes are sorely missed

  3. No disrespect to Ryan Christie but his comments on Kranjcar are one cart horse comparing another. Sadly Niko is done.

    • Hi Billy, long time no hear!

      Point taken on Christie, if anyone could shed a pound or two it would be him. A fine physical specimen he is not. As for Niko, we were lightly critical of certain aspects of Holt recently and got a barrage of detractors. Meanwhile we give a little slack to Niko and the same guys want him gone? Views in our support can be a tad hypocritical!

    • Absolutely bang on….his display along with Barton n Sen-dross was cringeworthy ….thanks loaf ya scheming prick!

  4. Kranjar was an excellent player, unfortunately he is no longer…pity he could not be moved on during January ..I would have loved to see him prove me wrong tho…cause on flashes he has real style and ability

  5. Kranjcar is Finished!
    Hes not the same player he was at portsmouth/spurs
    Get him off the wage bill!

    Now and again flashes arent good enough, for us to catch them lot, we need players who are gonna perform week in/week out.

  6. This article is nonsense. Don’t want to destroy a Rangers player but Niko’s best days are well behind him and he is taking a wage we could use on a younger fitter player. To quote a Fraserburgh player in support of the arguement is just daft!

  7. He may be certainly past his best but I think you make several valid points forgiving him one last chance. I thought he did well against the Brochers last week despite the quality of the opposition. He is different from any of the raft of holding midfielders but I think he needs a run of games to get him anything near match fit. Plenty young guys round about him to do the spade work. I still think he could do a job between now and the end of the season.

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