A lot of Rangers fans are reacting with frustration at ‘yet another’ Championship player being linked with the Famous, as Ibrox Noise’s Ross reported yesterday how Chelsea’s Dujon Sterling appears close to a move to Ibrox.
Ross explained the lad isn’t the worst player ever, and how he could actually be decent competition for James Tavernier’s right back slot, which the rest of us would love to see given how untouchable Tavernier has been there since 2015.
However, the frustration from the wider support is understandable, and Ibrox Noise explains why:
See, the Championship is far from a bad level, it is in fact far superior to the Scottish Premiership by a distance. Indeed, Scotland’s top flight is somewhere between upper League Two in England to the bottom of the Championship, and that’s being generous.
But there’s a huge condition – and that condition is called Rangers (and Celtic).
See, the pressure of playing for the Famous far outweighs the pressure at any club in England except perhaps Liverpool, Man Utd, Chelsea, Arsenal and these days Man City.
At these clubs, even a draw is not an option, it’s the end of the world, just like Rangers. But the rest of the Premier League is still HUGE pressure, massive pressure, colossal expectations and big money. Look at how Joe Aribo, thriving at Rangers, has absolutely flunked in England – the pressure and quality was just too high for him and he wasn’t able to make the step up.
He was absolutely strolling it in League One with Charlton and was mostly fine at Ibrox with Rangers. And before you ask, the Europa League is nowhere near the level of the Premier League.
What we getting at? The pressure is just not there in the Championship, which is why signing lots of players from that league is not getting players definitively capable of handling the pressure at Ibrox.
Look at how Michael Beale thrived at Queens Park Rangers, getting them second top of the table for chief’s sake, 19th October they were only 2 points behind Vincent Kompany’s barnstorming Burnley.
And yet at Ibrox after winning the matches ‘he was supposed to’ when the pressure really told v Celtic and v Aberdeen, he’s not been able to cope. Not yet anyway.
In short, the reason we want PL players at Ibrox is that while the Championship is better than the SPL, more or less, the pressure in it is nowhere near the same as it is at Ibrox, while it IS much greater in the PL, so if players have a CV from the top flight in England they will likely be able to handle our club.
Look at Scotty Arfield, Allan McGregor, Steven Davis and now Todd Cantwell. Guys with boatloads of experience in the Premier League and how well they fit in or already knew how to.
Rangers targeting Championship players doesn’t necessarily mean the player will fail, but he will not have known pressure like what he will face at Ibrox.
It is a gamble.