Michael Beale has confirmed he’s not working on defence at all, after revealing he’d only look at a new recruit in there if injuries don’t improve.
The Rangers boss was speaking pre-Kilmarnock and exalted the virtues of his back line, suggesting the depth is just fine and he’s happy with the quality of personnel, after hinting Ben Davies has an ‘issue’ (it’s called negotiating his exit) and that Ridvan Yilmaz is out injured.
In terms of availability James Tavernier, Adam Devine, Dujon Sterling, Leon Balogun, Connor Goldson, Leon King, John Souttar, Johnly Yfeko and Borna Barisic are the options at Beale’s disposal for the trip to Rugby Park tomorrow, and that means the chances of Rangers fielding a strong defence are minimal, including Beale’s insistence that Connor Goldson is fit and goes straight back into the squad.
As things stand, we see a Tavernier, Goldson, Souttar and Barisic defence, which falls so far short it’s not even funny. Only Souttar is up to scratch of that lot, and we can see serious punishment if/when Beale selects that rearguard.
For a manager keen to fix this squad, his neglect of the backline is almost a parody of disinterest, and after all the shambolic defensive problems last season, seeing them all repeat themselves in preseason to then result in Beale being happy with that and not having interest in resolving it basically confirms his apathy when it comes to defending.
We can see this nonsense being his undoing, quite honestly – he signs a whole new midfield and attack, and just leaves the defence, our Achilles Heel, entirely untouched.
Doesn’t matter if you’ve got Messi in attack, if you’re messy in defence you’ll lose football matches.