By Daniel Feliciano

3rd May, 2022 | 11:45am

Brian Laudrup calls out 3 Rangers players who didn't do enough, defends Giovanni van Bronckhorst

Brian Laudrup has defended Giovanni van Bronckhorst for his performance as manager this season at Rangers, and called out three players for not doing enough.

Van Bronckhorst took over at the club in November from Steven Gerrard and had a six-point lead in the league at the winter break, but now finds himself six points behind Celtic with three games to go and in a Europa League semi-final.

But Laudrup, speaking to Daily Mail [print edition Page 78, May 3rd], believes that January signings Aaron Ramsey, Amad Diallo and James Sands didn’t make a big enough impact and all focus must now switch to Europe.

“Van Bronckhorst took over in November. He was replacing a popular manager. He didn’t have any of his own players and was obviously looking for more options in certain areas, particularly the right wing.

“He has made mistakes, of course he has. Looking back at some of the performances after the winter break, I’m sure he would have done things differently. He’s the manager and that’s where the buck always stops. Clearly, though, January didn’t help him.

“It’s too much to say that window decided the title on its own. There have been more aspects at play. For one, you have to give great credit to Celtic’s consistency. But they took a real lift from business done in January and Rangers didn’t.

“[Amad] Diallo, Aaron Ramsey, James Sands none of them have made a big enough impact. Van Bronckhorst didn’t get an injection of reliable quality and that’s something I’m sure people inside Ibrox will reflect upon.

“For now, though, it is all about Thursday night and a shot at history.

“The odds remain against Rangers but Van Bronckhorst and his players are getting used to upsetting predictions. No one should count them out.

“Rangers will have regrets but it would be wrong to pin blame on Gio. If Rangers can overturn their first-leg deficit against Leipzig on Thursday, Van Bronckhorst would become the fourth Rangers manager to take charge in a European final after Scot Symon, Willie Waddell and, finally, Walter Smith.”

Harsh

It’s harsh to say that the three players the manager brought in during the January window didn’t make a big enough impact when they’ve struggled for game time.

Diallo started brightly and then after a horror 45 minute spell against Celtic where the whole team was shocking, he’s barely played. Sands has barely had a kick because of the depth in midfield too, while Ramsey has been largely good when he’s been available.

The bigger issue this season was a lack of rotation when juggling the domestic campaign and the Europa League, but he will learn and improve on that going forward.

The title is now gone, so there’s no point dwelling on past mistakes. All eyes turn to the huge game on Thursday and most fans would be willing to forgive if they get a trip to Seville to end their season.

He will get funds to bolster the squad this summer and build it into his own image to push forward and go one further next season to compete on all fronts.

In other Rangers news, Rangers starlet has told club he wants to leave, plan to ‘maximise’ transfer fee