“I hate it” – Rangers defender clear on preferred position

“I hate it” – Rangers defender clear on preferred position
GLASGOW, SCOTLAND - SEPTEMBER 16: Steven Gerrard, Head Coach of Rangers looks on prior to the UEFA Europa League group A match between Rangers FC and Olympique Lyon at Ibrox Stadium on September 16, 2021 in Glasgow, Scotland. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Calvin Bassey’s former U23 coach at Leicester, Steve Beaglehole has confirmed the LB absolutely hates CB and while capable of playing there, he doesn’t excel in the position and really is ‘built’ for LB.

The 21-year old Rangers LB, having such a strong season for Rangers in what was previously a position monopolised by Croat star Borna Barisic, has become a major selection headache for Stevie G, with the Rangers boss having to choose between the player with the reputation and the player with form, but according to his ex-coach, Bassey cannot stand being deployed in the middle.

He said:

“He was a left-back. He rebelled early on about playing centre-back. He didn’t start the season particularly well a couple of years ago and got injured. Luke Thomas had come up (to the under-23s) and was knocking the door down and I said (to Bassey), ‘Listen, he’s staying in there. I’m going to play you at centre-back’. He said he didn’t want to so I said he could be on the bench then. He didn’t like it as he’s a strong character but he played centre-back anyway and was outstanding. I said, ‘You played well there’, and he said, ‘Yeah, but I still hate it!’.”

While Beaglehole and Bassey both acknowledged he played well, the FB clearly hasn’t developed that side of his game at all, and his difficult evening in Prague suggests Bassey is now a fully-fledged LB by trade and will only fill in at CB if the squad is down to bare bones and there’s no other option.

This indicates Steven Gerrard’s quotes of praise that Bassey can fill in in the centre are more an observation that the lad has played there before to some merit, rather than it actually being a position he thrives in or enjoys these days.

It’s why he’s never looked great in the middle for Rangers, and has only come into his own this season at LB with a full prepping pre-season.

Let’s hope Bassey isn’t ever needed in the centre again.

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