Michael Beale plans to make Malik Tillman a BIG part of Rangers

Michael Beale plans to make Malik Tillman a BIG part of Rangers
GLASGOW, SCOTLAND - SEPTEMBER 17: Malik Tillman of Rangers challenge for the ball with Ryan Edwards of Dundee United during the Cinch Scottish Premiership match between Rangers FC and Dundee United at on September 17, 2022 in Glasgow, Scotland. (Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images)

Michael Beale has given a big, big clue about the future of his Rangers team, after extolling the brilliance of Malik Tillman as a player he REALLY wants to keep, and it’s a throwback to what Rangers’ manager knows best.

As Ibrox Noise explained in years gone by, Beale took two years to suss the Scottish Premiership out, and the way he cracked it, as he hinted himself years ago, was to build the side around Joe Aribo, making a player in the 10 the focus of the whole team.

It absolutely worked, and Rangers strolled to 55 from it. Aribo, of course, got injured early on in this plan, but Beale (and Gerrard) used Ianis Hagi instead, or Arfield – they kept using the 4-3-3 with Kamara, Jack or Davis, spearheaded by Aribo or Hagi, with Kent left and ‘someone’ right, often Aribo later in the season.

And it worked – this focus on Aribo or a creative 10 roaming in the last third secured 55.

And Michael Beale now wants Malik Tillman in the same role – the exact role he did v Leverkusen. We emphasise that was only a meaningless friendly, so we need to stop drawing any conclusions from it – the real stuff starts on Thursday.

But the plan is clearly in place – Beale wants a Rangers 10, a playmaker in front of two holding midfielders. On Saturday those were Kamara and Jack, then Davis and Lundstram, but Tillman was very much in front in the first half before being removed. Arfield then Lowry did the same in the second half.

And that’s the model – it’s Beale’s favoured system, and he did the same with QPR as well.

Michael Beale has been doing this with Rangers a long time, and yesterday was a sign he plans now to make Tillman very much the new Aribo. Different playmakers, both very effective if used correctly. Of course, Tillman is currently a loan, so Beale wants him permanent.

But then, it could all change again if he struggles v Hibernian – we’ll see if it still works with the serious action.

In theory though, Beale is laying the groundwork, and we’ve been here before. No bad thing.

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