Rangers’ defensive troubles go from horrendous to unspeakable with the latest injury blow hitting Graeme Murty and his squad.
Rangers’ manager has confirmed David Bates is out for six weeks minimum with ligament damage, on top of unconfirmed reports that negotiations over the 21-year old stopper’s new deal have stalled.
Blunt truth is apart from a fledgling period of a month or so last year where the ex-Raith defender looked like he had potential, he has simply not been good enough for Rangers and his absence is really only disappointing from a selection options point of view.
Rangers’ central defence is currently so weak it is hard to know which loss would actually be hard to take – while Bruno Alves is theoretically the best Murty has at his disposal, the Portuguese giant has been mostly unimpressive since signing last summer, and the other options are the underwhelming Russell Martin (returning from injury) and the unreliable Fabio Cardoso.
Bates has struggled to impress much more than Martin or Cardoso, and while he does have lots to learn, we have seen little sign this calendar year that he has what it takes to even develop into a fine player overall for the club.
This is not to rub salt in the wound – he will be devastated at the injury and it thins an already atrocious department of Rangers’ squad. We hope he recovers quicker rather than later.
But those Rangers fans who believe he is good enough to be a Rangers defender may find themselves outnumbered rather these days by those who don’t.
Either way though, Rangers are now down to Alves, Martin and Cardoso. And that barely inspires either.
A recall for Aidan Wilson perchance?