Van Bronckhorst must find his best XI for Rangers to build momentum before World Cup break
It’s been a tough month for Rangers to deal with, but they managed to stem the flow of a “crisis” when they beat Dundee United 2-1 last weekend.
Defeats to Celtic, Rangers and Napoli consecutively meant there were concerns about Giovanni van Bronckhorst’s position being tenable, as they collapsed to an 11-0 aggregate loss across those games.
One of the main concerns was the boss’ team selections, with a clear problem that it seems as though he doesn’t know his best team yet despite being at the club for almost a year.
There have been criticisms of his picks for several different positions, so what is Van Bronckhorst’s strongest Rangers lineup when everyone is fit?
Well firstly, he needs to permanently recall Allan McGregor as the number one goalkeeper despite him being an OAP.
The team immediately looked more confident and under control defensively when he came into the team against Napoli despite the defeat, with a feeling of more safety between the posts and he should keep his shirt for as long as he’s fit.
In defence James Tavernier and Connor Goldson have established themselves as first-choice after years of top level performances and they’ve been sufficient to keep their place in the team going forward and earn them new contracts, but the left side of the defence needs ammendments.
James Sands has had the mantle as starting centre-back for most of the season but he has constantly let the side down and the experiment needs to end immediately.
Ben Davies hasn’t been given a real chance yet as he suffers with injuries too, but he shouldn’t be starting if John Souttar is fit and Rangers must do everything they can to get the former Hearts man back on the pitch.
At left-back there is a tough decision to make, but it’s hard to see how Ridvan Yilmaz doesn’t get the nod over Borna Barisic. With European and international experience he’s yet to be given a crack at Ibrox, but we know Barisic isn’t good enough.
Against the lesser teams his delivery makes him an adequate option, but against the top teams he is constantly found out and targeted and something must be done about it.
In midfield John Lundstram is the first choice and deservedly so, but his partner is constantly chopping and changing. Glen Kamara is the man with the perfect skillset to partner him and the Finland ace deserves to be in the team more often than not.
Further forward there is nobody in the squad who can offer what Ryan Kent does at his best, and regularly he is the man the team look to for inspiration. Despite his struggles this season he deserves to keep his place.
Two summer signings should join him, with Tom Lawrence and Malik Tillman among the standout players for the team prior to this blip in form.
Their dynamism, speed, creativity and ability to chip in with goals and assists takes some pressure off Kent and balances out the team more, meaning they’re a far more complete unit.
Up front Antonio Colak has been the main man this season and is the current top goalscorer, but if everyone is fit he isn’t better than Alfredo Morelos.
The Colombian has struggled this season with a number of issues, but at his best he is capable of affecting a game without being on the scoresheet and his relationship with Kent should see him start over the Croatian.
In other Rangers news, the board have been caught in a web of lies as fans demand answers for missing £40m