Thursday, 1 November 2018

What's gone wrong for Steven Gerrard's Rangers?


Only less than two months ago, this Rangers squad was running through brick walls for its manager Steven Gerrard.

The Anfield legend had overhauled the side with his own signings, players he’d cherry-picked to replace the existing ones, and they, in concert with the players he elected to choose of the-then current squad, were clearly running their hearts out for the gaffer.

This was never more evident than in Russia, when 9-man Rangers braved its way through a torturous evening and made the Europa League group stage in borderline impossible circumstances.

Ibrox Noise was starting to compare Gerrard to the great titan himself Walter Smith, with the intuitive ability to command respect, show leadership, and have even Andy Halliday looking like a player.

Fast-forward to today and the climate has dramatically changed.

The players are no longer delivering for this manager, and the manager is publicly flogging them every chance he gets for it.

What’s gone wrong?

For us, the first sign of trouble was in Spain. For absolutely no reason, fan-favourite and brilliantly-performing Nikola Katic was ditched for on-loan Joe Worrall in a decision which made zero sense. Sure, Katic hadn’t been 100% perfect but he was playing for the shirt and his partnership with Goldson (more on that later) was a huge reason for Rangers’ upturning fortunes.

Gerrard saw fit to end that and put in Worrall, who has had one good 90 minutes since he arrived (Rapid).

This incident showed a strange level of man-management and not even Gerrard’s most ardent admirers (which we were, incidentally) could justify it other than ‘In Gerrard We Trust’.

Fair enough. But the real trouble for us started at Hamilton. When Gerrard inexplicably selected Jordan Rossiter (who hasn’t featured since) and while the Scouser didn’t drown, he wasn’t far off it. He wasn’t ready. The diabolical display then saw a win against all odds and Ibrox Noise already started to have that sinking feeling.

Then Aberdeen. None of what Gerrard said was wrong, he just shouldn’t have said it publicly. It was inappropriate, out of place, and it discouraged players. Instead of inspiring them, it was slamming them for all to hear.

Then, today, he’s done it again, slammed the players and used the same rhetoric he has started to use the past few weeks.

One commenter on the site has made a big claim; that he’s Warburton mark 2. Well, we can say this. Remember when Gerrard originally joined and talked about managing game by game based on how the opponent set up and lined up? Correct, yes? Well, the past month Steven Gerrard has reverted to Bread Man dialogue instead by talking about how it’s all about us and what we do. Every. Single. Time.

And last night, we watched another 90 minutes of lack of effort, heart, quality and spirit. These players are no longer delivering for the manager because he slams them rather than supporting them.

Footballers are precious – they need guidance. And your manager repeatedly smearing you publicly is not going to work. Players are now scared to play for Rangers – they are scared to play as they can.

Look at how terrible these guys are now compared with two months ago. Scott Arfield and Lassana Coulibaly are shells of themselves, and Ryan Kent, our previously best player, has utterly struggled and looked disheartened the past two matches. Even Glenn Middleton has crumpled to nothing of late.

Steven Gerrard keeps banging on about how he expects his big players to step up and deliver – and attacks them for not doing it. Attacks them aggressively. Attacks them personally.

And whether we like it or not, that isn’t going to work. Some fans might say he’s saying the right thing and that these players should be told this stuff because this is Rangers. But then we point out Walter never did and that was Rangers too. There’s a way of doing things, and Gerrard seems to think the Jose Mourinho school of slamming his players is the way forward.

It. Isn’t. Working. And while we are far from alleviating the players of blame here (let’s face it, they’ve been mince the past month or so) Gerrard is not going the right way about getting a reaction to bad results.

We fully expect the usual abuse (often personal) for this piece, for speaking our minds. We were right about Warburton, Ally, Caixinha and Murty. And we keep hoping we’re wrong on this one.

Hopefully Gerrard learns fast because right now, it’s not working.

32 comments:

  1. You got it spot on. Same old same old and no better at this stage than Pedro's side. Gerrard certainly needs to mature more as a manager or he will turn out to be just another Rangers mistake. He seems to be making some odd tactical decisions but what would us fans know! These guys can perform better and should give the worlds greatest fans more to cheer about. They ned to show some pride but they obviously nรจd some positive stroking.

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  2. For me having a settled back line is a must,early in the season we were raving about our defence and not losing goals,why change something if its not broken,only Gerard knows why he put Worrall in and removed katic,confidence has gone from a lot of the players and a lot of them are struggling.

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  3. why are we playing loanees over our own players ,theres the problem we have had for years ,were massive club why do we need a loan of other teams players .no big team needs loan players ,gerrard has made big mistake clearing out players he should have bought 2 or 3 top class players not 15 ,docherty ,mcrorie even holt are better than current midfeilders ,his job is to look after rangers not other teams players ,

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  4. Continuity is the secret, chopping the squad nearly every game, select the best 11, and stick with them. He has to stop publicly humiliating the player's.

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  5. I think this article makes the point...
    Nothing has 'gone wrong' - SG was never a good appointment, and all that's happened is time has passed and the inevitable results are coming in. He has no managerial experience, can't change systems, picks the wrong players in the wrong positions. This was obvious two months ago, but people were blinded because he was a good footballer. It's like expecting someone to be a good chef because they are fat.

    SG will be sacked, and a new name will appear - everyone will say this new guy is the real deal and two months later will be scratching their heads wondering 'what went wrong'.

    I don't see Rangers finishing top half under SG. I said that months ago and got abuse about it. He is proving to be a terrible manager.

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    1. Yes we've played shite but we're still only 4 points below your lot and top of our euro group

      WATP LETS GO ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง

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  6. The team are relying too heavily on the youngest players in the squad to deliver everything in the final third for us. Kent, Ejaria and Morelos, are expected to provide all the creativity and goals, and they're all 21 and under, and two of the 3 haven't even been 90 minute footballers before coming to Ibrox! We need a legitimate playmaker, and the backline should be settled. One positive from last night, set piece delivery. Tav has been shocking recently, but Halliday stepped up and put some great balls in. Candieas needs dropped, he's no final product at the moment, and someone needs to grab the game by the balls in the final third, and commit to splitting defences. All three central midfielders play too deep, or send the ball wide. Getting to the Europa league has coloured everyones view, and the feel good factor of that is great, but the reality is a 50% win rate in the league. Yes we were 180 seconds away from beating Aberdeen and Motherwell in the league, but we are where we are. Rangers have always had to face two banks of 5 at Ibrox, and that won't change apart from bigger teams coming here. No surprises on that front, so we should have a game plan to tackle it. Keep believing, it's still early days, and we can turn this around, it's really only two bad results, as the Spartak draw should be considered a positive! It just shows how far expectations have changed.

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  7. The team are relying too heavily on the youngest players in the squad to deliver everything in the final third for us. Kent, Ejaria and Morelos, are expected to provide all the creativity and goals, and they're all 21 and under, and two of the 3 haven't even been 90 minute footballers before coming to Ibrox! We need a legitimate playmaker, and the backline should be settled. One positive from last night, set piece delivery. Tav has been shocking recently, but Halliday stepped up and put some great balls in. Candieas needs dropped, he's no final product at the moment, and someone needs to grab the game by the balls in the final third, and commit to splitting defences. All three central midfielders play too deep, or send the ball wide. Getting to the Europa league has coloured everyones view, and the feel good factor of that is great, but the reality is a 50% win rate in the league. Yes we were 180 seconds away from beating Aberdeen and Motherwell in the league, but we are where we are. Rangers have always had to face two banks of 5 at Ibrox, and that won't change apart from bigger teams coming here. No surprises on that front, so we should have a game plan to tackle it. Keep believing, it's still early days, and we can turn this around, it's really only two bad results, as the Spartak draw should be considered a positive! It just shows how far expectations have changed.

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  8. A very good piece IN but slightly flawed at the Gerrard over critical comments to his players , Yes footballers are precious but do need to be managed . Gerrard needs to keep his council to in house bollockings and strong resolve ! This is no crisis we have a long way to go to even get near the stability the Rotten Mob and Killie have our team is nearly new in almost all areas and it will take time . I for one am a full supporter of Katic above Worrall . I also think Flanagan quality player that he is, is being exposed at left back for obvious reason he is not a LB !! Kyle needs to play more regularly and that might mean that Morelos either comes off or sits on the bench more regularly too. We need a ball player No 10 pity about Dorrans Ejaria could be the solution if he would get more confidence. I repeat from my last post Lets not overreact here we are still in in the mix,,, In SG we Trust

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  9. Some interesting use of language IN - players “slammed”, “smeared”, “attacked”, “personally attacked”. I don’t really see this - what I do see is a manager saying publicly that what is happening isn’t good enough. If players at a major club are surprised or offended by that, then really they need to play somewhere else where they can avoid the spotlight. We have a group of players who have been given the opportunity to play for a major club - they need to remember that their CVs tell us what they have achieved in their careers to date, and it isn’t a whole lot. They have an opportunity to change that and I think Mr G is perfectly entitled to expect them to step up.

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  10. "A bad workman always blames his tools", springs to mind. Everyone deserves the dignity to be advised of inadequacies on a one to one basis behind closed doors, not in public.

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    1. Then we would have people on here saying that Gerrard appears to be sitting back accepting bad performances. By the same logic we shouldn't drop these under performing players in case it hurts their feelings!
      As far as Im aware Gerrards comments have been addressed to the group of players and not to individuals.

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  11. Didn't agree with your article yesterday on SG, but i have to agree with you on this article. Just look at where the Jose Mourinho school of slamming players has got ManU.

    Dropping McGregor last night still baffles me, unless SG has dropped him because of his stupid elbow on Mackey-steven.

    Flanigan, Candeas, Tav and Worrell are always consistently picked regardless of form and this also goes against everything SG said himself when he walked in the door, competition for places and if you'd perform you'll be replaced, this isn't happening.

    The players are no longer afraid of losing their places they are now afraid of being publicly singled out by their manager(unless your names is Flanigan, Worrel, Goldson, Kent, Ejaria, Tavernier, Rossiter or Wes - Do you see the connection?).

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    1. What the fuck has Rossiter done ?, i think he's only played 1 full 90 mins so far this season,he should be getting more game time as the boy is class...No Surrender...

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  12. It's hard to argue with the facts and these are the facts printed above. I couldn't for the life of me understand why Katic would be dropped when his partnership with Goldson was so solid and was completely at a loss when Rossiter was named as a starter on a plastic pitch after the injury problems of the past couple of years. I am a season ticket holder and have followed the club for over 50 years, so have experienced managers good and bad. I can remember one game v St.Johnstone in Perth where the team that was sweeping all before them at the time came a cropper and wee Dick Advocaat ripped the players up for bog paper at the post match interview. I don't think they lost another game that season! That was then though and I agree that slating players publicly nowadays seldom works as they are sensitive souls bless them. I would make two points which anyone should feel free to disagree with. Firstly, I'm not sure there is a lack of effort from the players, just as Stevie says a lack of a genuine quality player who can make the killer pass to unlock defences like we've encountered over the last couple of games. Secondly, Stevie has been a manager for all of about 4 months and will definitely make mistakes both in team selection and press gaffes so he needs time to get to grips. Manager of the most successful football club in the world as your first job can't be easy....oh and he was a hero up until a couple of weeks ago too.

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  13. Hard to disagree with most of the article, but what I would say is I don't think there has been a lack of effort from the players, I think other teams and managers realise we are poor middle to front and our danger comes from the wings getting the ball to Morelos so they are playing accordingly, shutting off the wings, doubling up on Morelos and forcing us to break them down through the middle...we have shown there is no quality to do that. I sort of agree with you regarding Gerrard publicly slaughtering the players, but what is he meant to say? He's saying exactly what most of are saying, maybe he should keep it indoors? But then we would be thinking he is happy to tolerate these performances? It's a difficult 1. It's been refreshing have someone so honest. I quite like worral but I agree about katic, he was due a rest but he should have been re-instated to his position alongside goldson before now. To be totally clear..are you saying you would get rid of Gerrard?

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  14. Predictable team formation every one of our opponents know how we will line up and set their stall accordingly and it is looking more and more likely that Worrall is in the same category as the Liverpool loan players he must get played as part of the deal and what about Grezda why is he not getting a game and a parting opinion I would have McCrory before Coulabally

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    1. Let's be clear about this. Do you not think that Ceptic are predictable? Do you not think that Stevie Clarke or Neil Lemon or Craig Levein go to the San Giro and know exactly how they are going to play? Of course they do. The difference is they have the players to handle that. We don't. We have better players than last year but we need better still. That will take time.

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  15. We're all disappointed by past couple of results but to start talkin of gerrard in same breath as Warburton or ped is ridiculous. He's overhauled a full squad without much money + we were always going to have a period when we lost form but let's at least wait and see how this season goes. 2nd place at worse + beating sceptic have to be achieved +perhaps a cup final but we will get better + the money from Europe will help get in better quality. This was never gonna be turned in 1 season + whilst I have concerns iv seen enough to believe gerrard will deliver + stop 10 iar.

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  16. I don't agree that these players should be mollycoddled and fussed over, for them to perform. They should KNOW, what they have to do and what's expected. I agree with Bolton. If they're off-form because Gerrard is telling them to get their finger out, then that's just pathetic. Pampered prima-donnas. Crying like bambinos, cos they didn't get picked, or the plastic pitch doesn't suit. I suppose IN, you suggest a round of hugs and false praise heaped on them, in their safe spaces, so they can't hear us saying how SHITE, they've been. NO! Also, I blame Gary McAllister, somewhat. He's meant to be SG's right hand man and rock.

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    1. Joe, bit of a leap for you to suggest we want these guys mollycuddled. In fact, if you've read the past few pieces, that's the last thing we want. He SHOULD be reading them the riot act - but not publicly. THAT is our objection.

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    2. Fair enough. Got wrong end of the stick, there. Seems we're on the same page. That's what I think too. Apologies.

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    3. My question is why do managers have to do pre and post match interviews and how long has this been mandatory if it is mandatory? If you look at what was going on with Boyota in the east side and his managers comments etc , then they did not benefit form this either.
      So why does Gerrard have to explain to the media in the first place? This issue could solve most things on the article by Ibrox noise??

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  17. Get Worrall Halliday and Foderingham to fuck, not one of them deserve to wear the jersey, 3 complete lumps of wood, less than average pkayersGerrard walking away, he will be sacked next 2 bad results, keeps rotating players, fuck that, play the best team available, it's a fucking shambles now and it's embarrassing

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  18. The season has a mixed bag so far, if we "analyse" what has happened:

    Europe - 11 games undefeated. Excellent! Nobody would have dreamt of that at the beginning of the season.
    SPL Home - 16 points out of a possible 18. I certainly think that is good, a massive improvement on recent years.
    SPL Away - 5 points out of a possible 15. Appalling! Something seriously wrong with our away results.

    SG was brought in to move us forward from the very poor place we were at, and in Europe he has done a wonderful job - remember Progres Neiderkorr from last season?
    Also big improvement in our home results in SPL, away results have been shocking and we desperately need to improve away from Ibrox.

    But overall we have moved quite substantially forward, with some decent money in the bank from Europe which should help to fund some new players. We may like or dislike the players SG chooses to play, and there will always be disagreements amongst us as to whether we think he chose the right players. Just the same as some people have been very critical of SGs recent public comments about the players, and other supporters loved them and think it shows his class.

    But if we analyse the results since SG arrived, then it would be hard to argue that Rangers haven't made a lot of progress. Although still lots more to do, but it's early days.

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    1. If 11 games undefeated in Europe and 16 out of 18 points at home, given our shocking home form last season, isn't progress then I don't really know what you were expecting. Our away form could and should be better but losing 2 games out of 5 is hardly a disaster, especially when we've visited Parkhead, Pittodrie and Fir Park. I would argue only the Livingston game was a disaster.

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  19. GENTS... there needs to be some realism here.

    Gerrard has done an amazing job transforming the squad and doing so within a reasonable budget by using the loan market really well.

    Our club simply couldn't afford the expenditure required in a single transfer market to buy in the number of quality players necessary to make us properly competitive again. Few quality signings are made in January so it will take the summer window to bring in better players and permanently sign some of the loanees.

    League performances; Aberdeen, Celtic and Motherwell away are all notoriously difficult particularly after tough Euro ties. Those Livingston and Hamilton pitches are real levellers and you rarely see a good game on that surface.

    The semi final demonstrated the same issue as the Livingston game . Against big strong, well organised defensive units who sit deep we struggle. To beat those teams you need good delivery from wide areas and clever runs from strikers which we didn't have.

    The suggestion that Gerrard does not have the tactical knowledge has even list the players is nonsense as the Euro run demonstrates.

    After years of Rangers self harm and neglect it will take Gerrard more than one transfer window to properly turn things around but with full support I believe he can so let's get behind him and st Mirren are getting pumped at the weekend, just wait and see the reaction.

    Warburton mark 2 hahahaha

    Watp

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    1. You're trying to make excuses for Gerrard...It's the pitches, we've had to face hard teams away from home, players are tired, teams sit in against us...All utter garbage! He's the Rangers manager and he's been provided with over £10m to bring players in compared to Aberdeen who brought in 10 players for free or on loan and compared to Motherwell or Livingston or if it's easier to get - Every single team in the SPFL put together except Celtic! - If you think 2 shots in a cup semi final at Hampden park is a good demonstration of tactical knowledge then you wanna think again!

      As for Mark Warburton 2 - Enlighten us where he is different from Warburton?

      Has Gerrard stopped playing Tav in RB that leads to so many mistakes and lets us down when required most? Nope

      Has the team stopped all it's useless wee 2 yard passes without actually hurting the other team? Nope

      Do we have a leader in the team in the middle of the park? Nope

      Do we have a creative attacking goalscoring midfielder who actually creates things? Nope

      Has the manager stopped tinkering with the team for no reason? Nope

      Did he go to Celtic park and give Celtic a game? - Nope

      Does he know his best 11? Nope

      Does the manager make effective subs at right times? Nope

      I could go on but I'm not going to..As the point is proven. Gerrards management is much closer to Mark Warburtons that is to a Souness or a Smith, which most fans had thought he would be!

      Gerrard like Warburton comes from a youth background and manages his team like one...

      Take Europe out and he has simply been nothing short of disastrous unfortunately!

      WATP

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    2. PS - So we have brought Gerrard in, given him more than all the rest of the SPFl teams put together outwith Celtic. We have given him coaches, he has access to a good market down South, he has the best training academy in the entire country...and we are expecting to much for him to be competitive with the likes of Livingston?? - You can't be serious surely?

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    3. We played very poorly against Livingston but to suggest we were not competitive is ridiculous. We were the better team by a mile but lost on the day because of a shocking performance. Same against Aberdeen. Miles ahead in every department but lacked the cutting edge.
      At the moment we are unbeaten in 11 European games. We have won 16 out of 18 points at home. We have only lost 2 games away from home, one of which was at Parkhead so hardly a surprise.
      It's not making excuses to say that we've lost points at Parkhead, Pittodrie and Fir Park. It's an absolute fact that far better Rangers teams than this one have lost many points at these grounds.
      We've come from a very long way back and have made great strides this season but it's going to take another few transfer windows yet.

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    4. So we were better than Livingston by a mile, but gave a shocking performance? So Livingston were utterly dreadful then but managed to beat us? kinda answers the point eh?

      At Aberdeen yes we were better for long spells yes and didn't have the firepower but as the game went on it became a shooting gallery for Aberdeen with us camped in our own half and no leaders to drive us forward..Same at Motherwell, Livingston, Parkhead and now the cup Semi! Just because we are running around with lots of posession making lots of useless little passes it doesn't mean we are playing better than teams who are soaking it up then hurting us when it matters...ALA Rangers at Parkhead under Walter Smith.

      Where are these great strides please? Gave a good account of ourselves at Parkhead? Beat Aberdeen or Motherwell? Stopped dropping points against smaller clubs? Progressed in the cup competition? finally found a captain and leader? killing games off? Where exactly have we made these great strides?

      Gerrard might be talking different from Warburton, the players may be a higher calibre, but ultimately our league position, our style of play, our lack of leadership, our lack of cutting edge all remains!

      Too many fans want to believe so much they can't accept it. It's about Rangers not Steven Gerrard. If he is doing fantastic then I'll be the first to say so, bt when his record is as bad if not worse as a manager who lasted less than 8 months then I'm gonna say so aswell... WATP

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