Ross Wilson and the Rangers board have made it clear that there’s not much money available for an Ibrox rebuild. And with Ange Postecoglu getting his signings to gel across the city, the new Rangers manager Michael Beale needs to up their game in the transfer market.
So, if you take the reigns at Ibrox on Football Manager, the world’s most popular football management game, here are six free signings that could bolster your squad and help you claim Rangers’ 56th title.
In real life, football bosses must keep a straight poker face on transfer targets in case rivals are alerted. But that’s not a problem with Football Manager. You can go about all of your business without the prying eyes of other managers, and our six players could undoubtedly help you win the title in your first season in charge at Ibrox.
Rangers’ striking challenges have been well documented this season, with Alfredo Morelos out of form and Kemar Roofe out with a long-term injury. Although 36, Graziano Pelle is an accomplished international striker with a good record in the English Premier League.
While he might not be a regular starter for the Gers, he could be a valuable asset for your bench and will provide cover for Antonio Colak.
Rangers fans were surprised when they added injury-prone John Souttar to the squad at the end of last season, given the horrendous injury problems they’ve had with centre-backs recently (Filip Helander, Niko Katic, etc.).
In real life, the Rangers’ defensive woes have worsened this year, with a long-term injury to Connor Goldson and Ben Davies proving incapable of staying fit for more than a few weeks. In Mateo Musacchio, you have a ready-made international centre half, even if you might need to sell a few players to make up for his £30,000 per week wage demands.
With the legendary Allan McGregor on the wrong side of 40 and John Mclaughlin failing to live up to the hype, Rangers desperately need a goalkeeper in real life. Richard Strebinger is a great option in the game to fill the #1 jersey at Ibrox.
The 29-year-old is an Austrian international with more than 200 league appearances, with recent spells at Legia Warsaw and Rapid Wien on his CV. Reliable and with top-level experience, Strebinger could help Rangers improve their defensive displays in European competition and the SPL.
Another position that Rangers desperately need to improve on in real life is right wing. Ianis Hagi is likely to start when he returns from injury, but the talented Romanian has been out for more than a year.
While Thomas Pledl might not be a marquee signing, the German attacking midfielder has impressive attributes that could help him cement his place in your Rangers’ starting XI. He’s dangerous from set plays and can whip the ball into the penalty area, helping to create chances for Colak and his colleagues.
He has impressed throughout his career in the German Bundesliga II with Greuther Furth, Ingolstadt, and Fortuna Dusseldorf, so there’s no reason why he couldn’t do it for you in the SPL.
Another German worth taking a punt on to strengthen your Rangers team on Football Manager is Mortiz Leitner. After turning out for Dortmund and Stuttgart in the Bundesliga, Letiner went on to have an impressive spell at Norwich City, featuring in the Canaries’ midfield during one of their recent seasons in the English Premier League.
Leitner has great technique and can play through the lines, and his ability to find a pass could help you unlock stubborn SPL defences. What’s more, you could potentially sell Glen Kamara for a sizeable fee before signing Leitner as his replacement, providing you with extra cash to spend elsewhere in the team.
Some Rangers fans think that Borna Barisic’s best days are behind him, and the Croatian international can be sold for a reasonable fee on Football Manager. With Ridvan Yilmaz already in the door and vying for the starting berth at left-back, former England international Danny Rose would make a suitable replacement for Barisic and provide competition for the developing Yilmaz.
Rose is adept at going forwards and can join the attacks from out wide, offering a great supplement to the attacking prowess of James Tavernier on the other side of the pitch.