Goldson or Weir? Rangers badly need ‘Rangers Standard’ again

Goldson or Weir? Rangers badly need ‘Rangers Standard’ again
SEVILLE, SPAIN - DECEMBER 14: Jack Butland of Rangers gives the team instructions during the UEFA Europa League 2023/24 match between Real Betis and Rangers FC at Estadio Benito Villamarin on December 14, 2023 in Seville, Spain. (Photo by Fran Santiago/Getty Images)

Quite simply there needs to be a big change at Ibrox, and that’s to return to the spirit of Walter Smith in 2007-2011.

And that spirit, as much as his brilliant management was, was to do with signing players of real Rangers calibre.

Walter Smith would sign the best players in the SPL, as well as experienced Premier League pros not to mention one or two from LaLiga or France.

The guys he brought in were Rangers standard, Weir, Cuellar, Ehiogu, Thomson, Whittaker, Naismith, Boyd, Miller. Even Alex McLeish did in his time – Buffel, Barry, Boumsong, Kyrgiakos.

Rangers used to sign players of this level, players who kept us as champions, made us champions.

These days?

The step down sees us signing unknown quantities, or other clubs’ failures.

If we look at the CV of our players today, very few possessed a career that was clearly Rangers level.

Butland definitely, maybe Souttar, Lundstram… two experienced Premier League players and a top Hearts defender. Cortes was promising (and had a good CV) but sidelined inside seconds.

The reality?

The core of the team these is a Championship Wigan reject (Tavernier), a pair of Brighton ones (Goldson and Sima), another two Championship fodders (Cantwell and Lawrence) some unknown from Denmark’s top flight (Diomande), and a Premier League reject in Silva.

The calibre of player we aim to bring in is just infinitely lower than the stuff we grabbed years ago, and it isn’t familiar with the SPL.

This isn’t to do with money – Weir and Ehiogu were free. There are many perfectly good free agents around. We’ve signed plenty of economically-viable players in the past who were more than good enough.

But for whatever reason, Rangers always scout obscure projects on the basis of a Trading Model.

And we get the idea of the model, but we also need success. A Rangers-level team.

A team of ‘promising’ 21-year olds might look good on paper for asset purposes but the painful lack of clear Rangers quality right now in there is a bit concerning.

There’s also the issue of ‘stale’ – that too many players have been at the club too long, such as Tav, Goldson and Barisic especially, and we do need something of a summer clear out.

But the base point – the signings need to be better.

Would Walter have gone near Silva or Lammers?

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