Former Rangers defender Alan Hutton has blasted the state of the pitch at Ibrox on Wednesday night.
The Gers had to dig deep to see off Hibernian in a 2-1 victory, with the winner coming courtesy of new signing Ianis Hagi in the 84th minute.
But while the result was a positive one, it was the state of the playing surface that caught the attention, with Steven Gerrard even criticising it in his post match interview, as quoted by the Scottish Sun.
And Hutton was inclined to agree with him.
Speaking to Football Insider, he said: “To be honest, it was (awful). When I was watching it I was thinking: ‘This pitch looks shocking’.
“To be fair it was, I know it’s difficult up there with the weather and things, obviously Gerrard is used to playing on lawn greens week in, week out no matter the time of the year.
“He wants his team to play football, that’s the thing. It’s difficult to play on pitches that are all cut up, especially when he wants fast, flowing football, everybody on the front foot. It actually gives other teams a chance, it doesn’t let Rangers play football the way they want to.
“I think that’s where he’s annoyed with, playing at home should be the advantage. It’s difficult for the groundsmen, especially with the weather but I can understand his frustration.”
Was the pitch really that bad?
Yes, it was.
Patchy and quite obviously not up to scratch, you can understand Steven Gerrard’s disgruntlement.
The pitch at Ibrox was only relaid last summer, but heavy rainfall over the past couple of weeks and a punishing fixture schedule of five home matches since January 17th have really taken their toll, and something has to be done about.
Gerrard claims that the ground staff are working overtime to put things right, and in their defence, it’s not really their fault that circumstances have conspired against them in the way they have, but you would expect better from the best stadium in the country.
The importance of a good playing surface cannot be understated for a side like Gerrard’s either.
With 68% possession last night, it’s clear that he wants his side to dominate teams, especially at home, and that’s going to be a whole lot harder if you’re playing on a pitch that resembles a sand pit.
In other Rangers news, ‘Disgrace’ – These Gers fume at ‘joke’ performance in win v Hibs.