Steven Gerrard’s response to the Rangers striking crisis which ruled Alfredo Morelos and Kyle Lafferty out of the Betfred Cup semi-final against Aberdeen was to throw in Umar Sadiq.
The Liverpool icon’s side were seen off 1-0 by a Lewis Ferguson header and he bemoaned the lack of quality in forward areas as the frontline led by Sadiq failed to turn ample ball possession into chances and goals.
But Gerrard also acknowledged his role in the defeat, which came before a ball was even kicked at Hampden Park.
He regrets playing Morelos in the quarter-final clash against Ayr, as the striker picked up the booking that meant he was suspended for yesterday’s defeat.
He said: “I probably wouldn’t have played [Alfredo] Morelos against Ayr United – that’s one regret that’s swirling around in my head right now, and I’ll learn from that.”
There is no doubt that Rangers’ forward should have performed better on the day and created more chances with the ball possession they had; as well as knowing better than to get caught on a set-piece to lose the game.
But Gerrard knows that he put his side on the back foot by fielding Morelos in a game that Rangers won at a canter and ruling him out of the bigger clash yesterday.
He’ll learn from it, but it’ll sting today.