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Steven Gerrard should avoid becoming the next Rangers manager

The former Liverpool legend has been linked with the vacant Rangers managerial role.

Martyn Cooke

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Photo: Getty Images

On Tuesday evening Steven Gerrard confirmed for the first time that he had held tentative discussions with Glasgow Rangers regarding becoming their next manager.

Speaking whilst acting as a pundit for BT Sport the 37-year-old admitted that there were ‘truth in the rumours’ and that he intended to continue talks in the coming days.

The former Liverpool and England captain has been working as an academy coach at Anfield since retiring in 2016 and has been undertaking his coaching qualifications whilst also taking up a punditry position with BT Sport.

It is clear that Gerrard is looking to progress into management but is Rangers the right club at the right time? The logical conclusion would be no.

Whilst Rangers remain one of the most prominent clubs in Scottish football, underpinned by a prestigious history and a global fan base, in truth they are currently in a state of chaos.

At boardroom level, the club have a dysfunctional hierarchy that is exemplified by an absentee chairman who has been consistently drawn into disputes with the potential takeover panel. The current board have limited, if any, support from the fan base and financially the Gers are being kept afloat by directors loans.

(Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

On the pitch, things are not much better.

The appointment and subsequent dismissal of Pedro Caixinha was nothing short of a disaster and the Portuguese coach will be forever remembered for standing in a bush arguing with supporters following the club’s early exit from the Europa League in the summer.

Rangers failed to appoint a permanent replacement, instead opting to hand the role on an interim basis to Graham Murty who resigned at the start of the week.

His successor, another interim manager, is Jimmy Nicholl who’s previous managerial experience includes leading Cowdenbeath towards relegation from the second tier of Scottish football.

To make matters worse, two of the most senior figures in the squad, Kenny Miller and Lee Wallace, are currently suspended after an incident in the dressing room following Rangers’ exit from the Scottish Cup last month.

Furthermore, Rangers are currently a world away from being able to challenge for the title.

Brendan Rodgers has ushered in a new era of dominance at Glasgow Celtic and the club is on track to secure back-to-back trebles.

The gulf in class between Rangers and their cross-city rivals was demonstrated by two successive heavy defeats in two weeks in which they conceded nine goals and scored none.

To say that Rangers are not a stable club or moving in the right direction would be an understatement.

With that in mind, it is unclear exactly why Gerrard would be seriously considering the role. Faced with chaos at boardroom level, a squad of limited quality and a dominant Celtic team – it is difficult to see what the appeal would be.

(Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)

Maybe Gerrard has an unwavering confidence in his own ability and believes that he is the man to turn the club’s fortunes around, but he would be starting his managerial career with nothing to win and everything to lose.

A poor start to life at Ibrox would ultimately result in his reputation taking something of a beating.

It is equally confusing as to why the Rangers hierarchy are willing to offer him the role.

The club desperately needs a manager with experience and prestige who has proven capable of working in a dysfunctional environment with limited resources. It seems illogical to gamble on a prestigious player who has no previous managerial experience.

It would represent a monumental gamble for both Gerrard and Rangers and, on the surface at least, there would appear to be little mutual benefit.

Rangers need to avoid the allure of handing the managers job to a star name and should focus instead on locating an experienced figure who can begin a gradual rebuilding process.

For Gerrard, if he wishes to step into a management then he needs to ensure that he picks the right club, one where he will be given time to develop and discover success, otherwise his managerial career may be over before it begins.

Martyn is currently a PTA and Research Assistant in the Department of Exercise Science at the Manchester Metropolitan University (MMU). In addition to his teaching role he is also undertaking a PhD in Sports History that is exploring the origins and development of football in Staffordshire. Prior to working at MMU, Martyn spent a decade operating in the sport and leisure industry in a variety of roles including as a Sports Development Officers, PE Teacher, Football Coach and Operation Manager.

Rangers

Arsenal reportedly once wanted Rangers newbie in £10.25m deal

Steven Gerrard has lured the Nigerian to Ibrox and the Rangers star could be a hit in Glasgow.

Mathew Nash

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Rangers have completed the signature of AS Roma forward Umar Sadiq this week. The 6ft 3ins attacker has arrived on a season-long loan deal at Ibrox and will be tasked with adding attacking intent to Steven Gerrard’s side.

The 21-year-old is a top talent and has long been heralded as a star of the future for the Giallorossi. Last season he scored five goals in 12 games for NAC Breda during a loan spell in the Eredivisie. So Rangers are right to be excited.

If Rangers fans are looking for another reason to get excited about the young forward. He has been linked with a move to the Premier League in the past, namely Arsenal.

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Back in 2016 La Repubblica, as reported by the International Business Times, suggested that Arsenal had a £10.25 million bid for the player rejected.

It was a move that had Arsenal fans excited, as Sadiq was being tipped as a future star.


“Yes, there is interest from Arsenal but at this moment nothing is done.”

– Umar Sadiq’s agent Mohammed Lawal in 2016


Now it seems that Rangers have got a hold of a player that Arsene Wenger once rated highly enough to make a big bid for. That was not even too long ago, just two years.

If Rangers boss Steven Gerrard can get the best out of Sadiq at Ibrox then they might finally be able to rival Glasgow rivals Celtic in the scoring department next season.

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Rangers

Joe Hart would surely pick Rangers over Celtic in Old Firm choice

Joe Hart has been linked with a Steven Gerrard reunion at Ibrox and Rangers should be his only choice if heading to Glasgow.

Mathew Nash

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Joe Hart is set to leave Manchester City this summer. The club want to let the former England number one leave permanently to give him a chance to play regularly elsewhere. Owing him for his service to the club, they are set to allow a move anywhere for the stopper- who has had two mediocre loan spells at Torino and West Ham respectively.

Two teams that have been linked with the stopper are Celtic and Rangers. As reported by the Scottish Sun, the Old Firm pair are among the favourites to sign the keeper this summer.

It would, of course, need to see Hart take a massive pay cut but a move to Glasgow might be exactly what Hart needs. That is, if he moved to Ibrox.

(Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)

If Hart is to leave for Glasgow, then Rangers is where he should go.

Celtic would still have Craig Gordon standing in Hart’s way at Parkhead. Rangers, on the other hand, need a new stopper. It appears Steven Gerrard is not a fan of Wes Foderingham and Rangers, therefore, do have a gap in the goalkeeping department.

Hart would be the perfect man to fill it. With 75 caps for his nation the City stopper has bags of experience at the top level and Gerrard, a former England colleague, will know all too well what Hart can bring to the team.

If he does end up having to choose between Celtic and Rangers then it is a no-brainer for the struggling stopper. Ibrox would be the perfect location to get his career back on track.

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Leeds United

Oli McBurnie ready for Swansea campaign after summer of transfer rumours

Rangers wanted to bring him to Ibrox whilst Leeds reportedly wanted him at Elland Road.

Mathew Nash

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This summer saw Oli McBurnie strongly linked with a move away from Swansea City. The two clubs perhaps most strongly linked with his signature were Leeds United and Rangers. With good reason as well.

First of all, both sides needed strikers. In Leeds’ case, the West Yorkshire city is home to McBurnie. He also played under the manager at Leeds before the start of June Paul Heckingbottom at Barnsley.

Rangers also made sense. They needed a cheap striker and McBurnie, a Scotland, is a huge Rangers fan. A move to Ibrox would have been a dream come true for the player.

But it seems that any lingering hope any team had for McBurnie heading to Leeds or Glasgow is now over. The striker has bequeathed his services to Swansea this season. He spoke of his excitement at playing with the club in the Championship next term on their official website.

(xxxx of Derby County is tackled by xxxx of Barnsley during the Sky Bet Championship match between Derby County and Barnsley at iPro Stadium on May 6, 2018 in Derby, England.

Leeds fans had already accepted that McBurnie was not heading their way. At the start of May, the YEP reported how Leeds were ‘hot for’ the striker, who scored 19 goals in 36 games for Swansea’s under-23s and Barnsley last season.

But as soon as Heckingbottom got the sack a deal looked unlikely.

Rangers were still being linked as recently as June. The self-proclaimed fan of the club McBurnie was waxing lyrical about Steven Gerrard’s appointment in the Daily Record.

But Rangers, as well as Leeds, have missed out. McBurnie will now be hoping to find the net and the starting XI regularly at Swansea City next season.

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