Chris Sutton – so often the thorn in the side of Rangers fans with his outspoken views and Celtic-centric punditry – has had to eat humble pie on the BBC.
Sutton and BBC pundit Micah Richards got into a good-natured spat on the Monday Football Club, after the latter trawled the archives for some of Sutton’s Gers-bashing from last season.
“Everything is recorded,” said Richards. “I went through the archives and found this.”
In the clip Sutton said, “He needs to stop the 10, he couldn’t stop the nine. He’s had a bit of an easy ride if truth be told, the perception is down south he’s done a fantastic job but he hasn’t won anything with Rangers. He’s brought in nearly 30 players, how many players does he need to bring in? This has to be Steven Gerrard’s season or he’s failed.”
“I said this season he would do amazingly well,” said Richards.
Sutton had to concede ground and deliver the verdict that Gers fans have been waiting for. “A serious point about Steven Gerrard, this season, they have been phenomenal, Rangers,” Sutton said.
“The difference is this season, defensively, Rangers have been so, so sound.
“Steven Gerrard has improved every player in the backline, Tavernier, Goldson, Balogun has been a really excellent signing, Barisic, it wasn’t long away we thought he was going to leave.”
“The difference is both Rangers goalies are better than all three of Celtic’s keepers. Celtic are leaky defensively. Rangers were exceptional at the weekend. Their form has been so consistent, I take my hat off to Steven Gerrard.”
Music to our ears
This must be music to the ears of Steven Gerrard as well as to the Gers fans who’ve had to put up with a lot over the past few years.
No one expected Gerrard to come in and turn the fortunes of the club around immediately.
And, truth be told, the manner of the reversal this season has gone way beyond what any of us would have expected.
Rangers have trounced Celtic in the transfer market and a certain amount of complacency has helped their demise.
But, Gerrard has to take the plaudits in his first senior management job.
If this is a stepping stone to bigger things then he’s done Rangers a huge service and Liverpool will certainly be looking on with interest.
The aim is the Premiership this season followed by a good run in the Champions League next season.
That money can be used to fuel more good buys for Rangers and when Gerrard does leave, we expect it to be with Gers firmly on top in Scotland.
That’s the very best he was aiming for when he took the job.
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