Jamie Carragher dismisses Rangers pressure in Steven Gerrard question after Aston Villa win
Jamie Carragher dismissed the possibility that being Rangers manager brings major pressure and “glare” as he spoke to Steven Gerrard live on Sky Sports after Aston Villa’s win over Southampton.
The former Ibrox boss has been struggling at Villa Park of late with early-season results not matching the preseason expectations, but after a creditable draw with champions Manchester City they followed it up with a 1-0 win over Southampton on Friday night (16 September).
But Sky Sports pundit Carragher completely overlooked the fact that being Gers manager comes with heavy scrutiny of its own when he asked his former Liverpool teammate about the recent difficulties as if it was the first time he had experienced such a spotlight.
Speaking after the game at Villa Park Carragher said to Gerrard on Sky Sports: “You mentioned about being under pressure there. Obviously at Rangers you had ups and downs but you did a great job there.
“What’s it been like being in the full glare of a huge club as Aston Villa, and also nationally in the media, back in the Premier League with people actually questioning you as a manager, the first real time that’s maybe come on your toes, how’s that felt?”
Gerrard didn’t address the comparison and went on to explain that nobody likes criticism.
Yes there is a bias towards the Premier League in England as it is the self-styled greatest league in the world, and to an extent that is justified.
But Carragher should know football well enough, especially as a long-time teammate and friend of Gerrard, that being Rangers boss is far from some sort of training wheels job.
Giovanni van Bronckhorst is finding out right now what sort of glare the manager at Ibrox is put under if results are not good enough, especially against Celtic in one of the most heated rivalries in world football.
Gerrard did an impressive job in his time in Glasgow, gradually wresting back control from the Hoops after years of dominance to eventually win title number 55.
Clearly he and Carragher are both former England internationals and long-time Premier League players so they will know the lay of the land south of the border as well as anyone.
But as one of the main Sky Sports pundits the former Anfield defender should be aware that managing in Glasgow is not some sort of walk in the park.
Villa have been struggling for sure, but the only local derby they have currently in the English top flight is with Wolves, and despite a concerted effort to lift the standing of the club since he arrived there is far from the same expectation to be the best in the country that comes with the Light Blues job.
The standing of the league may not compare but the spotlight on the manager is arguably more glaring at Ibrox.