Jermain Defoe Challenge Will Make Rangers & Alfredo Morleos Stronger

Rangers thumped fellow Scottish Premiership side Hibs by six goals to one yesterday (Match Report –

Veteran hitman Jermain Defoe once again showed his class in front of goal as he claimed a perfect hattrick at Ibrox.

The former English international forward arrived in Glasgow last January in an 18 month loan deal from AFC Bournemouth.

Many predicted that the thirty-six year old would help lead a charge as Rangers challenged Celtic for the top flight title last term.

Unfortunately Defoe had to wait patiently for his chance as fellow striker Alfredo Morelos was in form. People had started debating whether Defoe’s signing was a panic buy and some even thought he was no longer capable to go the long haul.

By the time Morelos would receive yet another suspension, The Gers title challenge had fizzled out. Yet that run-in gave Defoe a chance to show he was still a marksman to be reckoned with.

In the end, Jermain scored eight goals in his seventeen league appearances for the 2017/18 season. That period towards the end of the campaign showed Steven Gerrard, the Gers support and importantly Alfredo Morelos that he wasn’t in Scotland for a final pay-check and that he could lead the line.

The Light Blues aren’t now reliant on the goals that Colombian international Morelos has provided in the last two years.

Defoe has now had a preseason under his belt with his Rangers teammates and he’s started this term with a bang.

The experienced goalscorer has played fives times thus far and scored five times. Interestingly Morelos has also started with a bang, grabbing seven strikes in as many games.

Gers boss Gerrard now has two strikers he can count on to lead the line and find the net. He can rotate the two, as he’s done already this year. That policy means that Defoe doesn’t get overplayed and importantly it has kept the hungry Morelos on his toes.

In his previous two years at Gers, Alfredo was forced to play through tiredness and flung straight back into the team after suspensions. That’s because he didn’t have strong enough competition for his place.

It’s all different now though.

Even after El Bufalo bossing the frontline during The Gers midweek impressive away win in Europe, Gerrard dropped the marksman and replaced him with Jermain.

The striker repaid his manager’s faith with a stunning treble. In return Morelos was clearly itching to get on and when his manager finally introduced him into the action, the Colombian banged in a brace inside the fourteen minutes he had on the pitch.

Both forwards are prolific, instinctive finishers and link-up well with their teammates but they also give something different to the Rangers attack. Defoe’s running off the ball is tremendous, while Alfredo is much better with his physical play.

The great thing is that the younger Morelos can learn from his more experienced teammate. Defoe has been scoring at the highest level for a long time now and he has also shone on the international stage. The younger hitman is also able to improve as he learns from Defoe and thrive under the pressure of having someone challenging him for his spot.

Gerrard clearly likes both his hitmen and the competition they provide each other:

“You need two who are as good, hungry and dangerous as each other. They have to understand it will be horses for courses – sometimes Jermain will suit an opposition, sometimes it will be Alfredo.”

“I need to make sure I get those decisions right. For sure, we are going to need both of them firing if we are to have any ambitions of moving forward.”

From The Scotsman

If Rangers are going to succeed this season, then they need to be prolific and kill games off.

To have that throughout the season then they’ll need their two prolific strikers to lead the line to almost perfection.

They should have that in Alfredo Morleos and Jermain Defoe, especially if the elder statesman can keep the younger man on his toes!

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