We’ll keep this one short and sweet – the warning sign was there against Stranraer, and now it’s bellowing loud and clear – in our current state, this Rangers squad will not win 55.
Because while our first choice first XI is the best in the country, and fully on its game, tonight’s abject misery v St Mirren following exactly the same against a team 2 divisions (practically 3) lower than us shows why the likes of Jon Flanagan and Jermain Defoe cannot carry the club when the first choice players aren’t there.
We’ve preached endlessly that the main group is good, very good, but as soon as you go out to the deputies, the standard drops horrifically.
Jermain Defoe is a unique case – a world class striker, but he struggles in many SPL matches due to compact tight defences, and it doesn’t matter how good your movement is, you can’t weave a free run through effectively 10 men. He was clinical where it mattered tonight but St Mirren are one of the worst teams in the SPL, and he can’t carry us in matches like these.
Jon Flanagan is simply not good enough for Rangers – nowhere near. He has some advocates among the support, including a few on Ibrox Noise, but for the majority of us, the guy is a waste of a wage.
And tonight demonstrated how flat the team has gone since Parkhead.
As if we put everything into that match, and there’s nothing left among the main group.
Only Borna Barisic and Joe Aribo got pass marks tonight, the rest were practically asleep. And we don’t really blame them. Why?
This is also what happens, Stevie, when you overuse a bunch of your favourites and never let the likes of Docherty, Jones or Edmundson (or to an extent Katic) get their chances.
We got the win, and we’re thankful – but this main squad of 18 already looks like it’s running on empty.
8 days to do something about that.