Rangers are finally getting the best from £35M Fabio Silva

Rangers are finally getting the best from £35M Fabio Silva
LISBON, PORTUGAL - MARCH 07: Dujon Sterling of Rangers celebrates scoring his team's second goal with teammate Fabio Silva during the UEFA Europa League 2023/24 round of 16 first leg match between SL Benfica and Rangers FC at Estadio do Sport Lisboa e Benfica on March 07, 2024 in Lisbon, Portugal. (Photo by Carlos Rodrigues/Getty Images)

In a strange ‘twist’, when on-loan striker Fabio Silva first joined Rangers, Philippe Clement announced him as indeed a 9, a striker, and the player himself confirmed it twice in the same press conference.

So it was clear, from the horse and other horse’s mouth itself, that Silva was a 9, a goalscorer.

The curiosity was that a lot of fans disagreed, and called him out as a 10.

The number of times Ibrox Noise had to clarify that he was being ‘marketed’ as a 9, and that the player himself and the manager described him that way were… vast, amid all the arguments from fans that he was a 10.

He didn’t even shine all that well as the 9 he was supposed to be, lacking the attributes we believed he had.

He was strong, but didn’t seem that great at holding up, didn’t score with gay abandon and generally appeared a bit off the pace.

And yet, it’s all turned around a LOT in the last three or so matches with his looking fitter, stronger, better, and adding regular goals.


Because he’s been playing as a left winger.

With Rangers’ wing crisis in full flow (we have only Rabbi Matondo ‘definitely’ fit) Silva has had to deputise on the left, playing a much deeper and more creative game wide on the flank.

He’s playing the style of a 10, but on the wing, bringing his game central as well as filling the flank, and is there any coincidence his best form is starting to appear as well?

In short, this lad and his manager may class him as a striker, but he appears to be clearly the most effective deeper, and at the moment, wider, and he’s certainly helping Rangers’ injury crisis in that position very well indeed.

So does this mean he’s a 10?

What it means is that like Dujon Sterling, he’s versatile – he’s flexible and he’s an attacker and he’ll play in any role in the front three that he’s asked to.

But it seems like his best one is deeper.

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