Rangers Shouldn’t Be Too Downbeat About Start To Their Season

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Everyone and their auntie will tell you that Rangers have endured their worst start to a domestic campaign since 1989/90.

Yet you need to add some context if you want a clearer picture.

Firstly new Rangers boss Steven Gerrard has brought in fifteen new signings this summer, with the latest one Gareth McAuley signing for the club yesterday.

It takes time to knit together a new team. Even signing four or five new recruits takes a period of adjustment, so you can just imagine the difficulties you face with having fifteen new faces in your squad.

The Ibrox club have performed near miracles in the Europa League, having just qualified for the group stages after beating teams from Russia, Slovenia and Croatia. That takes a lot of effort and the Gers side are not used to the rigours of playing two games in a week, plus the travel and again that will take time.

Then you look at the dropped points in the Scottish Premiership.

In their opening four league games they’ve played three away from home and they’ve picked up five points.

In those away encounters they were against very decent opposition. They were mere minutes and seconds away from winning at both Aberdeen and Motherwell.┬áThe fact that they didn’t clearly shows that work still needs to be done but if people were expecting an instant fix then they were living in dreamland. If Rangers work on defending set-pieces and on their concentration levels then they should be victorious in games like that in the future.

But they can never feel entitled to just turn up and win these tricky games, they need to work-hard for the three points any away ground in Scotland’s top flight.

Celtic are double treble winners and playing them at Celtic Park is never easy.

I didn’t believe the hype before kick-off with all the chat about The Hoops being in crisis and I don’t believe that the result at Parkhead will have much bearing on what will happen during the rest of the campaign. The better team won on the day, simple as that. Rangers looked weary after travelling back from Russia, having played with nine men for a significant period of time against FC Ufa. Celtic made their experience count and won the midfield battle.

The simple fact of the matter is this, Steven Gerrard is still learning his trade. He’s brought a team spirit back to the club that they were lacking. They look fitter, they’re getting stronger and they are difficult to beat.

It’s funny that people on both sides of the coin are making knee jerk reactions about Gerrard’s managerial career and his Gers team. Some will tell you he’s a saviour and will bring glory back to Govan, while others will tell you he’s a jumped up youth coach that’s going to fall on his backside.

In truth, it’s far too early to tell. I believe he’s made an encouraging start to life at Ibrox but he’s also made a few mistakes. The time to judge him isn’t after his first Old Firm encounter or after a handful of league fixtures.

Let’s give him until the end of the season and see if he’s managed to build a team capable of challenging for trophies and see if he’s learned from his early mistakes.

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