Exposed – Filip Helander and the truth

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Benfica's Portuguese forward Rafa Silva challenges Rangers' Swedish defender Filip Helander (L) during the UEFA Europa League group D football match between SL Benfica and Glasgow Rangers at the Luz stadium in Lisbon on November 5, 2020. (Photo by PATRICIA DE MELO MOREIRA / AFP) (Photo by PATRICIA DE MELO MOREIRA/AFP via Getty Images)

As everyone and his dog is having a hell of a go at Filip Helander for a bad night, we thought we’d take a closer look at his performance to illustrate how he played.

There is zero doubt he was culpable at all three goals, with the first one just setting his mood for the night. The ball, bouncing over his head, misjudging the flight at least twice as he haplessly let his man get behind him which led to a goal inside two minutes.

But what of the rest?

Well, would you be shocked to hear Filip Helander was by a distance Rangers’ best-performing defender?

He managed one tackle, same as Goldson, two less than Tavernier.

But no one in Rangers’ entire team, not any of the defenders certainly managed more than the number of interceptions he made, which was two. And clearances? Two, same as Goldson and the joint most in the team. He managed 6 defensive successes, more than any team mate.

He was also the only player in the whole team to block a shot at all, and his passing average was up there with the best of the team, at 94%.

Of course, Ryan Kent had a bit of an iffy night, penalty win aside, with two poor and wasteful finishes, but when a winger/striker makes an error, it just fails to score a goal. When a defender makes one, it often costs one. Which is infinitely more noticeable.

And Filip Helander, who had an otherwise excellent night, made three bad moments in this one which contributed towards the dropping of the full three points.

And sadly the results are what count.

He’ll be fine.

3 COMMENTS

  1. I felt he did have some serious errors but he never hides the big Swede . I agree Kent was guilty of poor finishing he’s been off it for a few games now . It’s great to be critical of such an excellent performance with 2 bad spells which cost us the win given where we were only 3 years ago.

  2. Let’s not hide behind the stats. Helander had a bad night. I’m sure even he feels that. But he’s had plenty of good ones too so let’s not castigate him too much.

  3. Despite those numbers, still feel it was the big fellas worst performance in our shirt. I said a few weeks ago that we were still leaking some chances but had been lucky the opposition hadn’t taken any or tested our keeper. Goes to show when you play a team that are clinical these errors can be very costly. Hopefully though he’ll bounce back quickly and show us the same standard of performance he’s made the rest of the season as he has been solid.

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