'Positive factor for the team': Van Bronckhorst says he's been very pleased with 25-year-old Rangers player
Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

'Positive factor for the team': Van Bronckhorst says he's been very pleased with 25-year-old Rangers player

Rangers manager Giovanni Van Bronckhorst has praised striker Alfredo Morelos for his attitude

The manager was interviewed as the duo picked up awards for the month of December.

GVB has picked up the Manager of the Month award after guiding his side to seven wins out seven in the SPFL.

Asked if the award reflected how positive his start to life as Rangers manager had been, he responded “It’s always nice to win awards”

GVB acknowledged his successful start saying, “The start of my career at Rangers has been very positive and I’m very proud to win this award”.

However, GVB was humble in his success, confessing it was a group effort.

“My staff who came with me and the staff who were already here have helped me a lot and worked hard to achieve the wins.”

Gio went on to praise the playing staff.

Thanking them for their work in the past weeks and months, he said: “That’s why I got this award! It means you’re doing a good job and gives me more motivation to keep going”.

TBR Opinion: Gerrard’s side had gone stale, Gio has improved the side 

It sounds inconceivable to think a team that went a season undefeated can be improved upon. 

However, Rangers had gone stale under Steven Gerrard this season.

Sluggish in Europe, stuttering through league games, conceding in most games, having barely been breached at the back in the previous season.

Something wasn’t right at Ibrox, and it looked inevitable that a couple of losses would come in the season.

A season with automatic Champions League qualification meant something had to give.

Gerrard left for Aston Villa, a move that left fans angry and disgruntled, but in hindsight it may have galvanised Rangers’ season.

Back to basics

Gio has implemented the changes that many fans had been advocating for months

Gerrard’s side played 4–3–3 with the wide players playing as narrow number 10’s.

The inside of the park often became congested, with creative players like Ryan Kent and Joe Aribo struggling to impact games.

GVB has shifted formation to more of a 4–2–3–1, playing with traditional wingers.

Joe Aribo has been deployed in the number ten role.

Consequently, he has arguably had his best season at Ibrox so far, looking nailed on for player of the year.

Aribo has contributed six goals and four assists this season, three goals and two assists under either manager.

However, Aribo took seven games under GVB to achieve those stats, as opposed to 13 appearances under Gerrard.  A clear indication that he is thriving more in the number ten role. 

Ryan Kent looks impactful now he is being used as a traditional winger.

Another player who is benefiting from Gio’s appointment is Scott Arfield. Arfield was out in the cold under Gerrard, playing 153 minutes in the league, an unused sub in three games.

Arfield has started five of GVB seven games, playing 90 minutes in four, and has given the side a much-needed energy in the middle of the park.

Alfredo Morelos – December’s POTM

Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

Possibly the man who has benefitted the most from Giovanni Van Bronckhorst’s appointment.

Under Gerrard, Morelos played 30 yards from the opposition goal, with his back to goal.

He often looked overweight, overcoached and uninterested.

Morelos looked a million miles away from the man who had carried the side on occasions when played as a number nine.

GVB has obviously seen what everyone else has and Morelos has resorted to the traditional number nine role.

Morelos has four goals and two assists under GVB.

Similarly, to Aribo, Morelos took just seven games under Gio to match his league tally under Gerrard.

Additionally, he also bagged a significant double to defeat Prague 2–0 in Gio’s first game in charge.

Gio has identified this saying “I think he’s done well since I came in and scored some important goals, which is always important for the team.”

The win against Prague came at a time when Rangers were under immense scrutiny.

Subsequently, the win sets up a glamour tie with Dortmund in the next round. A tie that Alfredo Morelos looks to be relishing.

Posting to his Instagram account on Tuesday, the player looks to be in the best shape of his Rangers career.

Rangers fans will be delighted to see this transition and will be eager to see Alfie back in action next week.

Morelos had a great month in December, bagging the player of the month award, something that manager GVB credits coach Roy Makaay with.

Speaking on Morelos, Gio said “He’s working hard and his attitude has been really good which is a positive factor for the team”.

In other news, McCoist takes cheeky dig at Steven Gerrard.

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