Dilemma for Stevie – will £3M man get dumped?


There were a few things of note to take from Thursday’s victory over Progres, but possibly the most subtle was a hint at the future of Rangers’ defence.

New signing George Edmundson started, and for a mere 21-year old defender, made few mistakes while playing as intelligently and composed as we’d alluded to on the site against St Joseph’s. He appeared to have a smart reading of the game, a strong physical presence, a lack of fear about making the hard tackles, and just generally stood head and shoulders above his more senior partner Connor Goldson.

Which raises a real point – Steven Gerrard didn’t sign this kid to sit him on the bench. He’s learned from his Nikola Katic Joe Worrall error on that one. And Edmundson has impressed more in his past two outings than Katic did in his early appearances.

By this we mean Katic was gaffe-prone. While we loved his attitude, his work ethic and his aerial domination, he was very prone to making big errors, to losing concentration. We always excused these as his learning his trade, but we must admit at a similar age Edmundson has shone brighter.

Which leads us onto Filip Helander. This is a defender Steven Gerrard, if all is pure and holy, has signed to play.

You don’t spend £3M if you don’t intend to play the guy – and therein lies our point. Nothing really stood out last season, none of Rangers’ defensive combinations absolutely nailed it and convinced that they were the solution.

But with Edmundson’s impressive start and the massive investment in Helander, is that the duo Gerrard is plumping for?

Obviously they will need to gel together and have an understanding, but we can’t help feeling Gerrard has earmarked both Katic and Goldson as depth (even if he spins them all as equal options) and will hope to play Ed and Helander.

The fact is having a rotational defence won’t work for Rangers – hell, it doesn’t work for anyone. You need your settled first-choice duo at the back, notwithstanding injury, and allow them to form the spine of the team thereafter.

But, of course, we hear you cry – what of £3M man Goldson? Surely he’s not going to go to the bench?

Well, the fact is he simply wasn’t impressive for Rangers, and continues to be unimpressive to this day. He has never stood out as a consistently great stopper at Ibrox, and we reckon as soon as Gerrard is able to pitch Helander and Ed in as his main duo, that’s the option he’ll take.

As with it all, time will tell.


  1. Wouldn't read too much into it as i think Stevie G likes to use different permutations for different teams and in Europe i also think we wont get to see a totally settled team all season,alot of choppin and changin will happen…No Surrender…

  2. Connor Goldson has been the most consistent of all of the defenders that have played over the last season.
    Add to the fact, he's had to carry the weaker defenders over the course plus had to deal with the chopping and changing going on beside him so i find it hard to agree with your view of Goldson.

  3. I have no idea what the guy writing this was smoking. Goldson was easily the best centre half in Scotland last season. He has made some mistakes but his last ditch tackles and presence saved us more than once, he never had a chance to have a settled partnership in defence and perhaps that caused a few errors. I'm sure I read that Helander has said he's a left sided centre back, Goldson is right sided. They seem to be the obvious pairing to me, the only problem will be keeping the 4 of them happy.

  4. Don't agree ibrox noise.I think stevie G rates connor goldson very highly and i see him playing the pairing of goldson and helander as his preferred no 1 centre half pairing.

  5. Not a chance. Goldson and Helander will be his main pairing – wen all are fit, he will use those two for the big games.

  6. Edmundson played well and looks like a good signing but to make a judgement based on a couple of friendlies and against poor opposition is a bit daft. I also think your harsh on Goldson and Katic who both performed consistently very well last season.
    I think Edmundson was played to give him experience in front of near 50k people in a meaningful game we didn't expect to be struggling in defensively.
    If Helander is as good as SG believes we will have 4 strong and reliable contenders competing for 2 CD positions. Exactly how it should be at Rangers.

  7. Don`t know how you can say he has never been outstanding , he has been a terrific signing and has really stood up in the big games .He makes the odd mistake bringing the ball out but they all do .Unless something major happens it will be Goldson and one other as first pick at the start of the season.

  8. Goldson and Helander at 6 million will be his pairing. But being at Ibrox on Thursday I was so impressed with Edmundson deserved MOTM albeit Jack was outstanding too.

    One mistake though like Worralls against Killie, it's good to know that we have Edmundson as a step in and Katic. Just hope Helander is all we want him to be.

    • Edmondson looked really good. I got what you are saying goldson is good not great. Maby a bit early to judge but this boy Edmondson looks really good with the ball. But time wll tell.

  9. Goldson seems to have many loyal allies,but the simple truth is,although he can get his head onto a lot of balls,the onward direction in which they travel is something of a lottery,indeed in the opposition box I have still to see him direct a header downwards towards goal,he also makes me nervous when he his on the ball and a challenge is close by,he also adversely affects the fluidity of the play as when he receives the ball it seems like an eternity before he has decided how to put it to use,I for one do not now see him as a 1st pick in central defence,but I believe he tries to give us his best.

  10. I like the look of edmunson he looks solid. Not seen anything of Helander yet so can't comment to much on him but he must be first choice or Stevie wouldn't have splashed a big chunk of his budget on him. For me I Love big Katic. He's strong gets in about it. Reads the game well imo. A major threat from corners. Only down side to the big man is that he makes an odd error here there but he's still young and learning his trade. Think Katic should feel hard done by if he don't get a reg spot this year. I don't think Gerrard likes him as much as he loves goldson. Gerrard I trust will know his best pairing. Bring Home 55.

  11. Find it difficult to understand why people rate this guy, he has been consistently average at best for Rangers from day 1 & simply isn't good enough in my opinion, I appreciate that we all rate various players differently & that,s all part of the interest & attraction to the game but surely we can all see this guys failings

    The fact that other defenders round about him didn't exactly shine last season cant hide the glaring fact that this guy, with the greatest respect, is Not Rangers material & never will be,

    He reminds me very much of Craig Paterson in the 80s – which, for auld blue noses like me, is not a good thing at all!


  12. Wouldnt read too much into it. And again, because a player might have to fight to get into the team doesnt mean dumped. Lets see that determinationthat people want to play and succeed. This willbe the biggest club that most have played for and if thats not motivation im with SG and bye.

    Also SG is open on cost means nothing. So Helander at 3m will dump 3m Goldson? Lets leave it up to the players to battle that spot.

  13. Goldson and Helander will be first picks for the majority of games against Scottish hammer throwers. The only issue with them will be lack of pace against fast forwards in better teams i.e. in Europe and against the not-so-great unwashed. Katic is fast and Edmondson looks even faster, so nice options all round

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