Simpson omission from UEL squad makes Ibrox exit surprising

Simpson omission from UEL squad makes Ibrox exit surprising
Jack Simpson of Rangers defends the ball under pressure from Josh Dacres-Cogley of Tranmere Rovers during the Pre-Season Friendly match between Tranmere Rovers and Rangers at Prenton Park on July 10th 2021 in Birkenhead, England Where: Birkenhead, Merseyside, United Kingdom When: 10 Jul 2021 Credit: Richard Ault/phcimages/Cover Images **NOT AVAILABLE FOR PUBLICATION IN UK NEWSPAPERS** PUBLICATIONxNOTxINxUKxFRA Copyright: xRichardxAult/phcimages/CoverxImagesx 41577417

Jack Simpson’s omission from Rangers’ UEL squad for the group stage is both unsurprising and frustrating, given the fact fans are still annoyed he was kept and Niko Katic now plays his stuff in Croatia.

Despite the ex-Bournemouth man’s curious priority in the squad over Niko, he was unable to get into Rangers’ Europa squad, with Stevie G opting instead for three CBs total.

What does this mean? Well, there is of course a limit in the squad numbers, which is compounded by the ‘home grown’ rule. Rangers have 23 men in their squad, and Simpson presumably didn’t fit into that, with the manager electing just 6 defenders, including fullbacks.

There is of course the B squad, in case of injury etc, but Simpson isn’t part of that either – excluded entirely from this squad, Simpson will play domestic football only, if he’s even prominent there.

All-in-all his involvement this season seems to be pretty limited – despite the main three defenders being part of the UEL, they will pretty much play all domestic games too aside the occasional cup match.

So Simpson over Katic makes all of no sense, really.

At least not to us.

Steven Gerrard, of course, is the manager, and there will be his reasons and his methods as to the choices he makes.

We can only really speculate.

But we’d definitely rather have Katic in the squad than a different country. Que sera.

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  1. Hopefully it is a sign that Niko is wanted by the gaffer and the whole “he needs minutes to recover fully” isn’t a smoke screen for us selling him at end of this loan. I’ve not seen enough of Simpson to say he’s terrible but he hasn’t convinced me in the handful of games he’s played. However, when you look at the centre back position it is clear, Goldson will play every game and the rotation will be between Helander and Balogun. With Goldson not signing a new contract, Gerrard may know already that he will be leaving and it makes sense to give Niko games elsewhere before bringing him back once Goldson has moved on. One can only hope.

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