Rangers Boss Steven Gerrard Has Given Alfredo Morelos His Self Belief Back

Towards the end of last season, Rangers striker Alfredo Morelos looked very jaded and his confidence was shot!

That clearly impacted on his performances as the goals dried up and he was missing more and more guilt edged chances as he snatched at opportunities.

Press speculation linking him with a big money move seemed to unsettle him in January, as did the continual changes to the Gers backroom team. Plus what some people forget is that the young Colombian hadn’t had any time off in the past eighteen months before this summer.

That break before preseason has certainly helped the forward as has the arrival of new Gers gaffer Steven Gerrard.

The English manager made it quite clear early on that he wanted to keep Alfredo and that he thought he had a big talent that could lead the line at Ibrox:

“We love the player. The fans love the player. He’s a goal scorer. We know what he can add to this team and squad.”

Gerrard continued to praise the hitman after El Bufalo scored the winner against Croatian side Osijek in the Europa League:

“We’re very happy with him,”  

“His application and his work-rate in training, on and off the pitch, has been superb. And I think he got his reward tonight for that. I thought his performance was selfless. He ran his socks off for the team.”

The fact that Steven Gerrard has trusted Morelos and continued to start him has given the striker a morale boost and he has rewarded his manager’s faith by scoring three times in his opening seven games of the season.

Morelos has also added to his game since he arrived in Glasgow from HJK Helsinki in 2017.

His link-up play has improved dramatically. He can hold it up and bring others into the game, that has become more evident under Stevie’s influence as the other players are quicker at getting in and around their main forward.

Under his new boss, the Colombian youth intentional also seems to be a lot fitter and he’s once again enjoying his football and looking a real threat inside the box.

As we already knew from last season, Alfredo can be lethal when an opportunity presents it’s self.

Today against newly promoted St Mirren, Morelos scored his first Scottish Premiership goal of the campaign. He was played through in on goal after a mistake from The Buddies defence. He didn’t panic and although his shot wasn’t the sweetest, the twenty-two year old kept his effort on target and it hit the back of the net.

As well as being an instinctive finisher on the deck, the attacker is also good with his head and that can be a vital attribute to a solo striker in Scotland.

Now he was lucky to get his red card rescinded after he was sent off after twelve minutes against Aberdeen during the opening league game of season, last week.

I do believe that he gets picked on by opponents, who do their best to wind Alfredo up and they’ll also go out and try and physically intimidate the frontman. While I think that referees should be quicker in spotting such spoiling tactics and do more to protect the young forward, Morelos also has to keep calm under that kind of provocation and not lose his temper. Gerrard will no doubt hope to channel that aggression and tell his forward to take his chances as that will shut the opponents up!

Hopefully Alfredo Morelos’ upturn form continues as he’s fitter, happier and working harder. His endeavour and appetite has returned and I believe that a lot of that is down to the fact that his manager believes in him!

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