Goldson or Davies at risk as Rangers’ John Souttar becomes undroppable

Goldson or Davies at risk as Rangers’ John Souttar becomes undroppable
Souttar in action at Pittodrie (Credit Rangers FC)

If there’s been one notable bright spot in these recently-trying times for Rangers, it’s that John Souttar has stepped up to perform and finally, after 8+ months, is proving why he was the best defender in the Scottish Premiership outside of the Old Firm.

We’ll be blunt – he was absolutely wrong to lie about his injuries when he arrived, and his early performances suffered for that, but since his return, he’s looked extremely impressive and every inch worthy of his reputation.

Even Rangers recognised he was our best player and put him on media duties and covered the site with his image to lessen the damage a little.

Better than Goldson? Well, Goldson isn’t actually that good, and we’ve lost matches with him in the defence as well, looking just as haphazard at the back with him as we do without him.

But on an individual level Souttar has let no one down, and has been that rare gem among the rubbish the team has been delivering.

Against Celtic, he produced better stats and a better performance than Goldson did in the much-vaunted 2-2. That backpass, while big, was his only error.

And v St Mirren and Aberdeen, his stats are equally as solid. V St Mirren, 8 defensive contributions to Davies’ one, and v Aberdeen it was 7 to Davies’ 6. Souttar has absolutely not let himself down and can hold his head high.

He won 5 aerials v the Dons (best on the pitch), 8 v St Mirren (best on the pitch) and 4 v Celtic (second best on the pitch).

Put simply he’s actually better in the air than the one thing Connor Goldson is so vaunted for, and his overall defending is far superior.

What he lacks, and both Goldson and Davies excel at, is ground-based passing and ball use. They can make things happen, and both are excellent passers of the ball.

But for the pure art of defending, Souttar is by a distance the best at Ibrox.

He has to keep his place even when Goldson is fit, but the question is who would partner him?

Davies has been poor lately, very poor, and there’s no understanding with Souttar – but Goldson is a righty and we’re not sure two righties are going to work too well either.

Either way, if manager Michael Beale has an ounce of self-preservation, he will keep Souttar at the back.

The question is how to work to his strengths and compensate for his weakness.

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  1. Souttar and Goldson didnt work the last time because Souttar cant play on the left side, 3 at the back would be the way to go, Davie and Goldson with Souttar inn the middle.

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