After Steven Gerrard was declared as the Glasgow Rangers manager, it had been expected that it would take him 2 – 4 years to have any possibility of winning the league. To expect to contend with Celtic immediately was not a realistic aim due to the money, experience and know-how already available to those at Celtic Park in Glasgow’s east end.
A reality: Football managers make a group of footballers their own until they’ve had two-three transfer windows to change things around. It was down to Gerrard to choose the players who could leave or move on loan, and the players to build around and keep. Out of a group not good enough for Rangers, he kept some. Gerrard signed a left-back along with good calibre centre-backs.
Rangers needed to get back on a winning track after years of enduring Mark Warburton, Ally McCoist, Pedro Caixinha and interim manager Graeme Murty. Manager Gerrard recognized the attacking capacity of right-back James Tavernier, midfielder Ryan Jack and goalscoring striker Alfredo Morelos. Regrettably they were the only 3 players that met the level needed at Rangers. He knew that quality players were critical to win any silverware, while he could instil soul and personality in his side. Gerrard moved to sign Nikola Katic, Connor Goldson and Borna Barisic.
Rangers did not have players who might manage the pressures and expectations of playing for a team as big as the Gers. Deals for Scott Arfield and Allan McGregor were lined up, but wanted the blessing of Gerrard. Ex-Liverpool winger Ryan Kent followed.
He understood overhauling was needed to attain success. All of these footballers have been shown to be clever acquisitions. January saw Steven Davis Glen Kamara and Jermain Defoe being added. Left-sided defender Filip Helander was brought in, together with ex-Kilmarnock winger Jordan Jones and the versatile Greg Stewart. Another player in the group, Joe Aribo is currently turning out to be the icing on the cake at the latest XI of Gerrard. Greg Docherty and Eros Grezda are equally decent players, but Gerrard’s approval is still lacking. The Rangers of Gerrard are far superior. They’re tactically, physically and emotionally more powerful. Gerrard is picking players out at the ideal cost, who will fit in and boost his side. His advancement at Ibrox demonstrates that he understands a player and highlights his coaching ability. Is this the year he wins silverware for the first time as a manager?