Rangers dropped their first home points in the league this season, courtesy of a 1-1 draw with Steve Clarke’s Kilmarnock. Alfredo Morelos put Rangers ahead in the ninth minute. However, Greg Stewart equalised and it ultimately was the deciding factor in the result.
There are a few issues that caught my attention during the 90 minutes at Ibrox:
Lack of reaction and players feeling sorry for themselves – it cannot happen
Steven Gerrard sent a warning to his players after Sunday’s defeat to Aberdeen, and to be honest in the first 10 minutes, Rangers went about their business in a decent manner. The goal came from us breaking with pace and moving the ball quickly, funny that isn’t it?
Scott Arfield broke then fed it to Ryan Kent and then Alfredo Morelos’ shot deflected in past the Kilmarnock keeper Jamie MacDonald. I was expecting Rangers to kick on from there, but it didn’t materialise. Unfortunately, some shambolic defending between Jon Flanagan and Joe Worrall allowed Greg Stewart a few yards of space to pick his spot. It was terrible stuff and summed up both of their performances on the night.
Andy Halliday tried to drive the team forward along with Ryan Kent. Connor Goldson, who probably had the best chance from a close-range header, and Joe Worral, from the subsequent rebound, should have scored via a James Tavernier corner. However, as time went on, the team started to tire and feel sorry for themselves and realistically offered nothing in the last twenty minutes or so. They have to man up and put that kind of attitude in the bin if they are to be a success from here on it.
It is a tad worrying at this point that only Alfredo Morelos looks like grabbing a goal. We need the likes of Ryan Kent, Scott Arfield and others to chip-in to lift the burden from the Colombian’s shoulders.
Most of the players are off the boil at the same time form-wise
Usually, if you have one or two players off form at any one time, you can usually get away with it and carry them. However, Steven Gerrard is faced with five, maybe six players off form all at once. Furthermore, I believe Daniel Candeias is one of the players who should be on the bench for Saturday, along with Lassana Coulibaly, Joe Worrall and Jon Flanagan. There are four right off the bat, you simply cannot have that many players having an off day and expect to win games. Changes should be made to the side for Saturday’s match, maybe a freshen up will do everyone the world of good.
It’s how they come out this mini-slump that matters; Saturday is a must-win
This may come as a shock to some: bad runs of form happen in football. It’s not exclusive to Rangers. In my opinion, Rangers are now in a mini-slump. The support has witnessed four poor performances on the bounce. We cannot change that. It’s now about how the team comes out the other side of this bad spell.
They must get back to winning ways. There is nothing else for it. I don’t think the blame can be laid at the Steven Gerrard’s door for that performance against Kilmarnock. He made early subs and did some of the things we asked of him; the players never delivered. However, it’s in times of adversity, you find out who can handle it. They need to step up on Saturday and deliver. The eleven who are picked to start must show the correct amount of bottle and quality to go and win the game. A performance similar to that of the Rapid and Hearts games would be most welcome.