Philippe Clement admission spells trouble for Rangers’ Todd Cantwell

Philippe Clement admission spells trouble for Rangers’ Todd Cantwell
Todd Cantwell of Rangers is seen during the UEFA Champions Qualifying Play-Off: First Leg between Rangers v PSV Eindhoven at Ibrox Stadium on August 22, 2023 in Glasgow, Scotland. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Philippe Clement’s admission yesterday that the removal of Todd Cantwell was ‘tactical’ was a pretty stark comment that the Rangers playmaker isn’t firing on all cylinders and frankly the first team is arguably weaker with him in it.

As much as fans love ‘Todd the Prod’ he hasn’t lit the side up this season the way he did last, and frankly we have players who fit Clement’s system a lot better than he does.

Who would have believed you last second if you’d made the claim Scott Wright is actually a better fit and option now than Cantwell is?

On the sub, Big Phil said:

“It was more tactical. Also with his yellow card I didn’t want to take chances with that. With Scott [Wright] we know he has the energy and I want to rotate with the two of them like the last couple of weeks because I want fresh players in front that can make directions but also the defensive job. Just a tactical one, nothing special.”

This is being very diplomatic to an extent, but also Clement is making the clear admission that Cantwell is not a first pick under him, and that there will be rotation between him and Wright (and others) depending on system used and opponent faced.

And while Andy Halliday has been making the claim Cantwell isn’t as ‘fancied’ by the Belgian as he was by Michael Beale, it’s equally hard to disagree with the former Rangers man that the ex-Norwich playmaker looks far from a stick-on as a regular.

He will fit in as and when Clement needs him, but in reality, he was off the boil this season already under Beale as it was.

While by no means attacking Cantwell, it seems like his best Rangers form was seen last campaign, and we’re yet to witness it returning in the past 6 months. Wright added a tonne of energy on his arrival at Hampden, and it is he, not Cantwell, is looking more like the first choice at the moment.

Cantwell is no longer indispensable and the manager will use him as he needs him. Which is perfectly sensible management. It will just make Todd more hungry to impress and try to regain his footing.

Which is the attitude we need from all players.

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