There is no question a number of Rangers players simply didn’t take to Giovanni van Bronckhorst. Despite the man’s achievements of Sevilla, Scottish Cup and taking us to the UCL group stage against all odds, the former manager simply wasn’t supported by the whole squad in the way they had under previous manager Steven Gerrard.
In truth, it was Gerrard’s squad, or Michael Beale’s, however you look at it, but under Gio a host of the players simply didn’t live up to the levels they had under Gerrard.
Tavernier, McGregor, Barisic, Goldson, Jack, Kamara, Kent, Morelos, and quite a few others dipped majorly in performance, when we go from Gerrard’s 55-winning squad to what Gio ended up with, and the only beneficiaries of Gio’s arrival were John Lundstram and… we’re already struggling to think of other players whose game actually lifted under the Dutch manager.
So, reasons notwithstanding, and right and wrong ignored for now, it stands to sensible conclusion that Michael Beale’s return would absolutely jolt these players back into life, players who had clearly downed tools under GVB.
Is it great? No. Some fans are even labelling some of them as snakes and wasters – but the reality is an apathy clearly set in under Giovanni van Bronckhorst that came in from Steven Gerrard building a squad (aside Jack, Tavernier and Morelos) that lost its direction with the change of manager.
It wasn’t overly obvious last season – even if a number of Rangers’ players weren’t great, those three big achievements over May to August at Ibrox were massive and didn’t necessarily point to a huge fail to come.
But after PSV away, Rangers’ season absolutely fell to pieces and form out the window, and now we’re learning mostly why, as well as the injuries, which we have discussed already.
But is there a case to say that the likes of Ryan Kent would get a whole new lease of life under Michael Beale? Kent in particular was effectively signed by Beale, his old mentor at Liverpool, and if one player would deeply benefit from Beale coaching him daily again, it’s Kent.
True, there’s a lot to be said that these lads should be Rangers men and train professionally for whoever manages them.
But footballers are also primadonnas who like things the way they prefer them, and Kent’s best spell in football came under Beale and Gerrard.
If Michael Beale became manager we might just see the old Ryan Kent back who was a clear contender for POTY in 20/21.
There’s also Alfredo Morelos, who produced his best form under Beale as well – under Gio, first half of last season aside, he’s been dreadfully poor and deeply unmotivated.
We are in no way defending the player actions, assuming they are true, but Beale’s return to Ibrox could well wake this squad back up from its slumber.