Bongani Zungu

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PAISLEY, SCOTLAND - DECEMBER 30: Bongani Zungu of Rangers arrives ahead of the Ladbrokes Scottish Premiership match between St.Mirren and Rangers at The Simple Digital Arena on December 30, 2020 in Paisley, Scotland. The match will be played without fans, behind closed doors as a Covid-19 precaution. (Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images)

We’ve barely touched on our South African import since he arrived in October, and while his second half debut v Hamilton was impressive, it was of course in an 8-0 demolition of the visitors with us already 4-0 up at half time.

He’s basically barely featured since, and his minutes tells you a lot:

8 appearances, just 109 minutes played.

What is Bongani’s position?

In short, he’s a disruptor, a defensive midfielder who can also get forward too. He’s most commonly known for being a central midfielder, but his stats are those of a defensive one.

He doesn’t score or create much, but he stops the opposition.

We plucked a random Ligue 1 match to demonstrate him:

Playing DM, his stats v Marseille 6th March last year were:

2 tackles, 4 interceptions, 3 clearances, 1 blocked shot.

He was the most heavily involved outfield non-defence-based player for Amiens that day aside Gael Kakuta, with a strong 67 touches.

While Zungu has not got going yet at Ibrox, this lad is a decent, very decent in fact defensive midfielder.

Is he a flop?

Well the reality is like Jordan Jones, like Greg Docherty in months gone by, like arguably Cedric Itten, Steven Gerrard hasn’t yet seen fit to include him in the starting lineup, electing instead to keep on pushing 36-year old Steven Davis and the slightly off-form Glen Kamara.

Zungu isn’t a remarkable world class player, but the guy can play, and as yet we’ve not really had a chance to see that.

He’s being judged negatively on the basis he isn’t playing, with fans defending that call, yet the same fans slate Stevie for not choosing Jones while Kent is out of form.

As things stand, Zungu remains on the bench, but the lad is not a bad player.

Maybe he just hasn’t quite settled in yet.

2 COMMENTS

  1. I think after the St Mirren it was a time to settle the side down and play our best 11 every week until the situation settled. I imagined that would be up to and including the Pittodrie game. I think that’s the way it has panned out. I think that has meant Zungu’s contribution has been limited. However, we are in a great position now and have some players in need of a break and have the breathing space again to bring in guys like Zungu, Itten, Defoe, Helander, Bassey etc. And looking at the bigger picture with Europe looming we could do with the wider squad getting more game time in case we need to throw them in.

  2. I’d like to see a bit more of him although I’m yet to be sold but as stated we’re gonna need this full squad at it and ready to be called upon as the games are about to start coming thick and fast.

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