Steven Whittaker’s words on Rangers captain Tav are worrying

Steven Whittaker’s words on Rangers captain Tav are worrying
GLASGOW, SCOTLAND - SEPTEMBER 21: James Tavernier of Rangers reacts during the UEFA Europa League 2023/24 match between Rangers FC and Real Betis at Ibrox Stadium on September 21, 2023 in Glasgow, Scotland. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

The fact former Rangers fullback Steven Whittaker has expressed criticism of James Tavernier, particularly the defensive side of his game, shows the problem Rangers have had for far too long over he and defensive mate Connor Goldson.

That problem being that they are untouchable.

Any other player who isn’t performing in their job gets dropped, no questions asked – Tavernier and Goldson are 100% unaccountable for their failures, and Whittaker’s comments are both true and worrying:

“That’s Rangers style, you have to be an attacking player. As a full-back I was that myself. He is doing that but, yeah, Rangers want to keep clean sheets at the other end as well so that’s something he has to look at.”

Any other player wouldn’t ‘have to look at’ their failings, they’d be on the bench or reserves until they’d improved that weakness.

But James Tavernier is so invulnerable at Ibrox that ex-players just accept he plays no matter what and implore him to improve the weaknesses in his game.

It’s a travesty that any player would ever be given the freedom of Ibrox in this way, that they are beyond reproach, and are simply being advised that one part of their game, in this case the most important, is something they ‘maybe should work on improving’.

How appalling is this?

Anyone else doing what Tav does gets dropped, ruthlessly, and only after one instance. Tavernier keeps his place with impunity.

Now, there are two caveats here:

We were on the level when we said it was a clean slate under Philippe Clement even for Tav – if the new manager can get a song out of this guy, we have no complaints. We will kowtow to the new man’s judgement.

We are also aware that what we’re saying applies from 2015 to present, but that it might NOT under Clement. The new manager may dump Tav hard, we do not know.

But it’s based on history, on what Tav has gotten away with up till now.

It’s pretty ridiculous.

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