We noted a social media post looking at the full options Rangers’ squad currently has. The post, which was trying to be objective, was criticised for being negative, given how early in the transfer window we are, and that’s true.
But we also wanted to be fair ourselves, and have a look through the whole squad, each position, and sum up exactly what players we have and where we are.
So without further ado:
Jack Butland, Robby McCrorie, Jon McLaughlin.
It’s much better with the addition of Butland, but the sight of McLaughlin is pitiful – Rangers have not yet been able to offload him, and until that’s done, we feel slightly more is needed in this area. McCrorie a very able deputy for the England international first choice however.
James Tavernier, Adam Devine, Dujon Sterling, and Mateusz Zukowski.
No denying we have plenty of options, but in all honesty, it’s far from an embarrassment of riches. Long-term readers know our views on Tavernier’s merits, and the depth under him is hardly great. Devine didn’t step up (think of how superior Patterson was at the same age), Sterling couldn’t make it at Coventry and Zukowski couldn’t even make it at Lech Poznan’s reserves. This area is poor, make no bones about it.
Connor Goldson, Leon King and John Souttar.
Yes, we love Souttar, but he and Goldson are injury-prone now, the former not getting any younger. Goldson is a Championship defender and far inferior to Souttar, but neither of them can be relied on to always be fit. King is well short. A little more needed here.
That is barely good enough for St Mirren never mind Rangers. Falls way, way short. More needed.
Borna Barisic, Ridvan Yilmaz.
This is good, much better. Barisic a reliable and trusty performer even if he’s getting on, and Yilmaz coming onto a game now. Looks a quality LB. Decent.
Nico Raskin, John Lundstram, Steven Davis, Glen Kamara and Ryan Jack.
When you factor in Lundstram’s injury and loss of power, Davis’ injury and being out of contract, Kamara’s desire to leave, and Jack’s not being his old self any more, it’s not exactly teeming with quality options. Raskin by far the strongest choice here, and Lundstram puts in a shift but it’s a hefty drop if Raskin is not fit. We actually don’t have any pure CMs. We don’t have a CM at all, by the traditional definition. We also don’t really play with them under this manager anyway. While Kamara and Lunny can play that role, it’s not what they do under this boss.
Todd Cantwell, Ianis Hagi, Kieran Dowell, Tom Lawrence and Alex Lowry.
Fitness notwithstanding, the depth here is outstanding. Almost ridiculous, really. Definitely do not require additions here.
Scott Wright and Rabbi Matondo.
This is threadbare. While Matondo has potential, that’s an ‘if’ and ‘but’. Wright isn’t up to scratch. Needs a lot of work here.
Antonio Colak, Sam Lammers, Kemar Roofe, Fashion Sakala.
Due to the way Beale sets up, positions are flexible. Lawrence can play LW as much as he can AM, and Sam Lammers’ role is not super clear just yet. But again, we cannot rely on Roofe’s fitness. We definitely need a top-class striker in here.
As things stand we are short of challenging for the title – there is potential, we’ve previously detailed quite a decent first XI in progress, and it is moving in the right direction, but the overhauling must continue for the squad to start to look properly outfitted for what we need from it.
One major problem is the lack of outgoings. Just five (6 including Tillman) have left, we’ve sold no one and we’ve not received many funds for anyone (aside the USA international). We’ve just not got rid of enough surplus yet.
Michael Beale was all about trimming the squad – he might be a little frustrated that approaching the end of June we’ve only shipped 6 men out, and at least one of those he definitely wanted to keep!
So it’s definitely in the right direction, but much more needs done before we’re ready.