Thursday, 27 December 2018

How Rangers can shock Scottish football


Let’s face it – Rangers’ form isn’t great right now and while Celtic are barely all that much better, on Old Firm day since 2012 they always raise their level versus Rangers.

So, Saturday is going to be a tough nut to crack, and with up to 10 players missing from the home dressing room, Steven Gerrard’s task is made that touch harder.

So, how can Rangers defy the odds and pick up all three points for the first time against Celtic since Spring 2012?

It’s a big ask, but Rangers have one massive advantage in this one – it’s at Ibrox, and expectation is currently some of the lowest it’s been since the dark days of a few years ago when imposters like Darren McGregor were embarrassing our shirt at Hampden.

That lack of expectation and the venue gives Rangers an unlikely boost – 50,000 home fans backing the side on against our bitterest rival will get 150% from our players. If the boys in our shirt can’t get up for this one, they can all leave. Plus that lack of expectation has taken the pressure off Rangers in a big way – we’ve already lost at Parkhead and we’re expected to lose this one. It’s akin to a wounded animal.

Furthermore, form goes completely out of the window against Celtic. We’ve managed a couple of draws of course, when our side was in pretty mediocre form, so it can be done.

Tactically things have to be absolutely nailed on. We cannot have James Tavernier bombing on and leaving his defence exposed again and again – the captain must lead properly and stay disciplined.

At left back Steven Gerrard must select Lee Wallace. He’s the most experienced at winning this fixture, and he will help guide the likely pairing of Joe Worrall and Nikola Katic in the middle – those two must listen to both the man behind them and the man to the left of them, and make sure all four of the back men remain tight and disciplined. It is vital we avoid Tierney (a doubt to make it, incidentally), Forest and Sinclair getting behind our defence as easily as they’ve been known to, and mercifully there’s no Tom Rogic for this one.

Midfield must be much more disciplined too – Ryan Jack needs a big game, and Ross McCrorie, probably one of our best players overall the past wee while, has to come of age and produce at this level. Both of these two, admittedly likely hampered by the loss of Scott Arfield, must stay compact to the defence while focusing on nullifying Scott Brown and Callum McGregor, while Edouard is a big doubt for the clash anyway, which potentially removes a problem.

As for attack, Gerrard has to get the balance of midfield right – does he pack midfield and defence like he did v Hibs at Easter Road and which really should have got the result, or does he brave going a more attacking formation?

We feel the 4-2-3-1 is suiting us best right now, and would support Alfredo Morelos with Candeias, Grezda and Kyle Lafferty. We need men strong on the ball to help Morelos, and all three of those are.

We need big performances from as many of our big players as possible. Lafferty, Morelos, Jack and Wallace will be hugely needed for this one and if they step up and help to maintain discipline and shape, while concentrating 100% of the time, there is a chance Rangers can defy the odds and bring the three points home.

It will not be easy, Lord knows it won’t, but if Steven Gerrard and his Rangers XI can pull a rabbit out of the hat, they’ll send all of us home happy.


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23 comments:

  1. Not Haliday or Worrell. Lee Wallace, Katic and the McCauley please or Goldstone if fit.

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  2. I was thinking last night to myself. Rangers had this so called make or break run of games to see exactly what we're currently made of, I think it started from Rappid. And we lost. We drew a game Nd lost one to Aberdeen. Then a draw at Dundee I think with two draws with Hibs. Pretty telling. I wish I had answers.

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  3. Expectations at lowest since 2012!!!!
    C,mon ibrox noise we've drawn against his but sit 2nd in table. I certainly have hopes for the game but then again I'm no a pessimist like your site has become

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  4. Yes. Lafferty is due a goal

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  5. The only way we win this is if someone else other than Morelos can score. It’s going to take at least 2 goals to get victory and the fact is that Morelos can’t score against the thims and with nobody else scoring right now it’s difficult to see how 3 points is achievable on Saturday! The key to beating them is Morelos or whoever absolutely MUST take their chances when presented. No over the bars or past the post and unlucky. On target and in the back of the net when the opportunity presents itself.

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  6. celtic are weak at the back.

    if alfred scores he could get his move.
    brown is old and griffiths is reaping what he sowed.

    lets see who cares about the fans.

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    1. Your the same as IN with the arrogance he said Celtic are not much better than us. You say Brown is to old. Do you know the age of one of our CB yes that's right 39 now that you and IN have put these statements out there we will be left with a huge massive slice of HUMBLE PIE again the same as last week and this week against Hibs. I want a win as much as the next rangers fan but stop getting carried away guys. Oh and they tramps sit top of the 3 clear from us with a game in hand and a better goal difference 3 could become 6 on Saturday and that game in hand would be 9. If that happens we will be finished for the season.

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  7. We will get thumped, lets face it, our form is pretty poor, we cannot defend and while I admire hope like this article, despite the crowd, it will go against us if, as I expect we lose the first goal, we are just pretty poor and god I do hope I am wrong J

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  8. I fail to see how Celtic are such strong favourites. Can play magnificently on our day but too many of our squad go missing when the going gets tough. Broadly similar achievements by both teams this year in SPL and EL surely? I'd be quite happy with a draw.

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  9. I used to really like this site as the reporting on this site was very well balanced. However lately I cannot take this site seriously anymore we have as a team this aeasin done extremeley well and Gerard has done well in his first job given the circumstances he has had to deal with and inherited for example the mexican dross that drains our club and the whole lee Wallace debacle which is the boards disaster. Also the fact the players apart from Ejaria have emptied the tank for us yes there has been some dodgy results but cmon guys Gerard cant take all the blame for results we have missed sitters and made mistakes at back. Three games we have lost goals at last few minutes of games that again is not Gerards fault the players have got to take responsility for that. What I am trying to say is it is all not doom and gloom and give him a few more transfer windows to sort this team as from day one he has not had his first pick midfield available again not his fault. He has made mistakes but so did Uncle Walter just get behind the boys wether its good or bad and give them some praise.

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  10. I'm afraid the "form goes out the window" analogy hasn't really applied since 2012. It's been a long climb back since then but we're not quite there yet. Of course we always have hope and a chance but I think most of their bad results are borne from complacency. Unfortunately that will never be the case when they play us.

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  12. You really know how to build up to a big game. Thank goodness you dont sit besie me if you actually go.
    My bus is leaving at half seven for a big day out to watch our heroes play our rivals. I will be cheering them on whatever happens, and if anyone in the ground thinks they can moan all the way through the game they will be told to keep it shut. I'm f@cking sick of negativity. Just keep quiet and don't spoil it for the real teddybears.
    On Rangers On.

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    1. So you’re unhappy that we’ve proposed how Rangers can win? Interesting take on the piece.

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  13. Can we play defensively for a whole 90 minutes?

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  14. Apologies - I was replying to that Scud the Spud guy. I've got the feeling he doesn't support the same team as me.

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    1. Scud does seem to get the worst out of people. Whoever he supports!

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  15. We need to set up how Hearts set up when they smashed them 4-0

    1. Don't Give them any Time or Space with Ball
    2. Get up in Their Face
    3. Push, Push, Push

    4. Let Middleton Tear Lustig apart 🤣👌

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  17. On the other hand, dwelling on past glories will us nowhere if we keep thinking the current manager can manage and move us forward. He is slowly but surely turning into a Pedro/Warburton mark 2/3, worse still, he is being given funds we apparently don't have J

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