Philippe Clement has confirmed that James Tavernier will remain Rangers captain and has also revealed he’s assessing Steven Davis, Alex Rae and Steven Smith for their suitability as his ‘Rangers man’ assistant.
In his first press conference as Rangers manager, the manager cut a determined figure speaking to the media properly for the first time, where he stated that he didn’t see any reason to change the captaincy for now, and that he was going to spend some time with Smith, Davis and Rae, particularly mentioning Davis, with regards to any of them being made permanent on his staff.
Some Rangers fans might be disappointed that Tavernier stays captain for now, but we doubt any of the staff would have told him that the lad should be demoted, so he wouldn’t see any reason of his own to remove him yet.
But tellingly, he did confirm what Ibrox Noise suggested a day or two ago – it is a ‘white paper’ or ‘clean slate’ for all the players, including Tavernier, to prove themselves good enough for Rangers.
Everything that went before Clement’s appointment is now water under the bridge, even if PC hinted that he knows the fans might not quite feel the same way!
And as such, all players will get a clean slate to impress the manager.
So while there were many big takeaways from this performance, with also a rather ‘put on the spot’ question by Sky’s Mark Benstead about the tragedy in Belgium, these key points resonate:
No new captain, for now, no reason to change that.
Davis, Smith and Rae being assessed for their suitability as permanent coaches.
And a clean slate – all players given a clean shot to prove themselves.
Do we agree with this? We do urge caution on keeping Tav as captain, he’s just not good at it and he’s very unpopular with fans in this role, but this is something the manager won’t know yet. We just hope he’s astute enough to pick up on it and sees himself the current captain isn’t suitable.
But aside that, Clement came across well, and we look forward to what he brings where it matters.