£5M on Mohamed Diomande was a big Rangers gamble

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£5M on Mohamed Diomande was a big Rangers gamble
GLASGOW, SCOTLAND - FEBRUARY 24: Mohamed Diomande of Rangers celebrates after he scores the opening goal during the Cinch Scottish Premiership match between Rangers FC and Heart of Midlothian at Ibrox Stadium on February 24, 2024 in Glasgow, Scotland. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

There’s no point asking ‘if’ Rangers should still sign Mohamed Diomande, unfortunately the choice has been taken out of our hands by Nils Koppen who agreed to an obligation to purchase for £4.5M showing that regardless of how the Ghana/Ivory Coast man performed, Rangers would be shelling the sum out anyway.

We say unfortunately because he’s hardly really set Rangers on fire the first five months, has he?

In fact, the midfielder, who’s a CM by trade, has actually been a bit disappointing, particularly in his defensive duties, languishing well down the SPL’s list and trailing even below Scott Wright in 119th place for percentage of ground duels won, for example.

See, he’s only been here half a season, so using pure gross numbers isn’t fair – but using percentage is accurate, because that’s not appearance-based, only ability-based.

And for duels all round, he’s poor, 132th for total duels (49%) and an atrocious 191st for aerial duels, among the very worst in the SPL.

As a CM, Diomande is underwhelming, extremely underwhelming. His passing range is a modest 80%, 39th in the league behind luminaries like Liam Polworth and Sam Lammers.

It’s safe to say the midfielder hasn’t really done a lot to show why he’s worth almost £5M, and he’s had 4 months already to click into gear.

His abysmal display v Celtic was a real eye-opener, because he’d already had a match v them and wasn’t great there either. That the highlight of his Rangers career was a slide-rule pass to Tav v St Mirren sums up Dio’s rather modest time thus far.

We could dismiss it, write it off as ‘winter window blues’ but then Oscar Cortes began flying before his unfortunate injury – we do know winter signings don’t always nail it too well.

But Dio? We’re into May and no more convinced than we were – we still see him a bit like Cifu, a player a bit out of place and whose addition hasn’t really worked yet.

These are the kinds of players Philippe Clement signed off on – we will need them to be a lot better next season or it’ll be runners’ up yet again.

We hope for much, much better from Dio next season, and much better additions this summer.

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