Rangers v Real Betis – part one

Rangers v Real Betis – part one
SEVILLE, SPAIN - SEPTEMBER 02: Manuel Pellegrini, manager of of Real Betis looks on during the LaLiga EA Sports match between Real Betis and Rayo Vallecano at Estadio Benito Villamarin on September 02, 2023 in Seville, Spain. (Photo by Fran Santiago/Getty Images)

In the first of our three-part Betis Preview, Ibrox Noise’s Derek’s goes on quite the rant!

To get straight to the point. Two years ago, we could easily beat this Real Betis team. Yes, Real Betis are managed by Manuel Pellegrini, and he took two teams to the quarter finals in the debut seasons (which shows that money does not always decide who wins) but just two years ago we used to defeat much stronger teams.

OK…that’s because we had a team that was just amazing. We were tough to score against and we knew how to win.

So, it really does not matter who the opposing team is. It is all up to setting up the Rangers team with the right tactics, and then training the team to play, as a team, to those tactics.

I mean look at Steve Clarke, look what he does with the players he is forced to work with. He looks at his opponents, notices how they set up, and tries to find simplest way to get the ball up the other end of and into the opponent’s net.

Ok, it is a little bit more complex than that, but he makes it look simple, because that is what he does. He sets up the players so they can help each other, and sometimes they have the freedom to just stop and think.

Then we come to Rangers, and oh god, I just see the same mistakes time after time after time.

Ok let’s break it down. The fact is it does not matter if Rangers play a 4-3-3 or a 4-3-1-2, or a 2-2-2-2-2. Beale’s team is always, always, always about just one thing; to make use of the park. To keep the game as wide as possible, and to stretch our opponents all across the park, by using long long passes that are usually far too easy to intercept.

For comparison Postecoglou was all about keeping the park narrow, and by keeping your team’s passes short and fast, you give the opponent’s less time to intercept, you can keep control and you can quickly triangulate the ball up the park.

The two strategies both have their weaknesses and their strengths.

When the wide game is done right, Rangers can truly rip apart any team. That is what we did two years ago, with the entire team working together; and we were just tearing apart our opponents left right and centre.

But this year, and last year, our problem has been our midfield…. part two soon…

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