Bump in the road
Yesterday those at Ibrox witnessed Rangers win the Champions League .
Well they certainly effing celebrated like they did !
Ok the bad news first ,,,
We were soundly beaten by a hungrier team that wanted it more
We seen 2 of our back 4 usual defenders injured in one half alone
We seen a template of how to play against us for the rest of the league to follow
The good news ,,,
These things happen , and people who play the champions generally raise their game
There are squad resources plus a cash surplus to address squad gaps
I doubt we will play that badly again and targeted players may well leave soon
If I were to coach the game the very first thing I would tell my charges is that if you won every game you wouldn’t be here nor would I as that would be boring .
Other teams are there to take points off you . We dropped 8 points in total in the league this month , that alone shows we not the high and mighty champions some think we are .
As far as I am concerned the phrase “ even a broken clock is right twice a day “ is very apt in that we will lose to every team in the league at some stage . Doesnt matter who they are , we are gonna lip up to them at some stage .
And thats why I see yesterday as water off a ducks back ,,, it was coming , its that simple .
The manager who delivers trebles eventually lost a game where he doesnt want to lose a game, and a team crumbled in the face of an extremely partizan crowd and a more fired up opponent .
Wont be the last time that happens I can guarantee you .
And then the opponents,,,, it was basically a cup final for them .
After having an average to poor December the bears were starting to question their new Messiah ,, so a blind man should have been able to see he would go all in for this one,,,
Knowing the crowd and the MiB was with him , and our own team has glaring problems ,, this game was an obvious one to highlight and target as a potential win .
And he did just that , but instead of just relying on emerging victorious in a battle , he also gave them a game plan .
When Craig or Boyata was in possession they were pressed quickly and all close out balls were squeezed . We soon seen it was the correct decision as both showed they are not very good at close ball control and consistently succumbed to pressure.
Shows Stevie has a wee bit of craft up above , at least.
When the team doesnt turn up really theres no point in picking individuals to focus on at all .
The starting team selection though leaves the gaffer wide open to pot shots .
It was strange , especially the Calmac at left back one , which many seem to lay particular blame for defeat at .
He has been great in the middle , better than the captain , and it was a call we probably wont see again tbh . The fact we had left backs available and still played him theres suggests tactics gone wrong , and theres no point in an inquest ,,,, unless it happens again .
And then with 2 injuries forced upon you you only have one single shot at a change of tactics , and yet almost everyone is gash ,, theres a rock and a hard place !
It was just a bad day all round at the office ,, and we should all be aware that they happen ,, and our bhoys have delivered a lot so lets not go hard on them .
THis upcoming break may well be a Godsend for our lads , and they do look like they could use it. And the window opens so some reinforcements will arrive and we hear that usually lifts the camp .
The window became that little bit more important with that defeat , and our frailties lying exposed for the world to see . Successful teams are built from the back , and depending on where you are sitting we need anywhere from 1 or 5 of our rear five replaced .
MIdfield looks fine , but trading some in would be nice . Olly and Sinky would top most lists of potential outs.
And upfront ,, at least 2 in surely and already we are strongly linked with a Psg youngster with a famous dad .
Brendan and the squad are crying out for a bit a help ,,, and I have no doubt we will see some movement on that front . The neutral may well be enjoying this season but the Plc should easily see the wisdom in being ruthless by loosening the purse strings and attempting to blow away any hope from those teams around us .
Post match Brendan was diplomatic as usual saying the better team won while Stevie claimed it was one for the fans , which will go down well in certain sections no doubt .
The bookies certainly arent fooled though and the Hoops remain 1 / 4 favs for the 8th title in a row . And with more money than ever in the coffers you would be mad to bet against us being champs again , and I certainly wouldnt .
If December was a busy football month , then we should aim to have a busy off field January .
We all know just two or three quality additions will shut up any pretenders to the throne ,, and will see us over the line , especially if one of them can hit the back of the net .
The players had their big month , Peter now has his .
Airdrieonians visit after the break is the first of 4 home games in a row ,, I couldnt think of a better run to help some new bhoys settle in and find their rhythm .
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