Ex-Rangers star David Robertson has been in the press today pleading with Ibrox manager Michael Beale to ‘do what Walter would do’ in a curious request to emulate the unicorn that was Sir Walter Smith.
We all want Walter back, lord knows Ibrox Noise looks stuck in the past half the time pining for our magnificent late ex-manager, but the reality is that’s gone, he is no longer with us and this club has to move on.
We cannot ‘do a Walter’ because he was a one off. Personality-wise Steven Gerrard had a similar aura about him for sure, but he did not get a managerial apprenticeship like Walter did under the similarly great Jim Maclean and never got to be a 20th of the manager.
Michael Beale, however, did. He got 4 years as assistant and a career of coaching in the game (England’s Premier League as well as the Scottish Premiership) before he then took up his own position at Loftus Road’s Queens Park Rangers, which went better than expected before Rangers snapped him up.
And now the real pressure begins.
Walter had an advantage in 1991. He got promoted to a job with a world class, yes, world class squad already in place which had simply lost its manager to Liverpool. While Graeme Souness explains Walter was the real manager from the start of his own reign at Ibrox, our former boss always had a great Rangers team at his disposal.
He didn’t have that in 2007 but by then he was already a world class manager himself. He made Scotland great for goodness sake!
Michael Beale doesn’t have either. He’s not a world class manager yet, and he is miles off having a world class squad.
So asking him to do as Walter would… sure, we all want that, but Beale is his own man, and not a tribute act. Like him or not, trust him or not, Michael Beale is our manager and should not be told to be someone else in order to succeed.
No one can be Walter. No one can do a Walter. We all want Walter, Davie, but sadly he’s gone and we need to find a new path now.