Giovanni van Bronckhorst’s defence of Rangers fans’ booing on Wednesday after the worst win we can pretty much remember at Ibrox for years was both fair, and sad.
Rangers’ manager, and he’s certainly under pressure these days, was not wrong to say that the supporters have every right to boo with a performance like that, although even then he had the audacity to praise the first half display suggesting it was only the last 20 minutes the fare derailed on us.
Because, to even a blind man, this was complete tripe from the first whistle, and Gio was right to at least defend the booing, because it was utterly justified in the most underwhelming and poverty-hit win we can think of at our home.
Sad? Because it was justified. Because this is where we are right now, that our manager defends the boo boys who made their feelings, rightly, clear at full time. One of the regulars on Ibrox Noise, who only occasionally gets to the matches, expressed that despite this being a rare visit to Ibrox, he left early as ‘Subway Loyal’ because he couldn’t take any more of the drivel he was witnessing.
And we defend Gio for saying it, for not criticising it – we know there’s been many managers who would gently ask fans not to boo the players, not to boo the performance – but Gio didn’t do that, he defended the fans and their right to be critical.
It’s sad, because it’s a reflection of how poor our team is these days that the manager actually defends criticism of it, and that’s never a good look.
In fairness, we at least have respect for his honesty, to defend supporters and take their side, and it shows him being a spot more in touch with fans, not trying to sell us a dummy or fob us off.
But then there’s the fact he’s so helpless right now that it’s about all he can actually do – defend his critics’ right to be critical in a time where Rangers’ form is well below par.
A long way from ideal.