John Lundstram ready to take advantage of Rangers 'clean slate' as distribution stat revealed
Rangers are entering a new era under Philippe Clement, beginning with Saturday’s (21 October) clash with Hibernian in front of an expecting Ibrox crowd.
Results need to improve in the coming weeks as do performances as the Light Blues need to recover from their disappointing start to the season, with players new and old needing to improve their levels to turn the tide under the Belgian manager.
Clement has insisted that all the members of his squad will be starting with a clean slate at Ibrox and one man that could be set to play an integral role is John Lundstram after the Englishman has been named alongside some of the best midfielders in world football.
According to the Daily Record (18 October), the former Sheffield United man has been included in CIES Football Observatory’s top 100 “distributors” in world football, alongside the likes of Rodri, Frenkie De Jong and Declan Rice and many of the world’s best midfielders.
The Rangers star sits 90th in the rankings having averaged 71 passes a match with an impressive 90.2 per cent pass completion record and this measured and assured presence in the middle of the park could be crucial for Clement’s side for the remainder of this season.
Much of the incoming transfer business completed at Ibrox this summer consisted of adding to Michael Beale and now Clement’s forward options and while the likes of Cyriel Dessers and Danilo are still dining their feet in Glasgow, they need reliable players behind them to offer support.
On top of his excellent ability on the ball, the 28-year-old has plenty of experience at a variety of levels of the British footballing pyramid, including more than 100 appearances for Oxford United, Sheffield United and the Light Blues, meaning he can provide a calm head alongside an otherwise fairly young squad.
Clement will have his own ideas of how he wants his side to play, but the early indications seem to show that he wants his side to dominate matches and wear down their opponents and to do that effectively, Rangers are going to have to look after the ball well.
There are few in the Ibrox ranks who can do that as well as Lundstram and assuming the attacking talent alongside him in midfield, such as Todd Cantwell and Kieran Dowell (when fit) pull their weight in the more creative areas, there’s no reason why he won’t start week in and week out, especially in the more important matches.
He may not be the most exciting of players, but teams need players like Lundstram to get through the ugly work to be successful.
In other Rangers news, Andy Walker has tipped Steven Davis for a role in Clement’s coaching staff