“Refuel, Review, Upgrade” – Rangers 1-1 Hamilton

The above title comes from Joey Barton following the weekends disappointing draw against Hamilton in our much anticipated return to the top flight.

Refuel – train harder next week. Review – analyse where we went wrong. Upgrade – It’s this final word which is the most important. If we want to be taken seriously as title contenders then we need to not only convince everyone else but convince ourselves. It’s ok talking the talk, now we have to walk the walk.

Saturday’s result was a poor one. Dropping 2 points at home to Hamilton is not the kind of result that wins titles. The performance on the day was nowhere near as bad as some are making out however. Like the Motherwell game, we dominated possession of the ball and in general our passing in the middle of the park was ok. What we lacked a killer through ball or a moment of individual brilliance like the 2 goals at Fir Park.

The goal itself came from Joey Barton’s tenacity to win the ball back on the half way line before Forrester’s sublime outside of the foot ball found Waghorn to net is fifth goal in 4 matches. Forrester changed the game when he came on. His directness and dynamism was severely lacking in the first half. Although promising in spells, Niko Kranjcar looks like he has work to do to become a regular starter.

The talk of who should start in the midfield dominated fans pre-match discussions and I don’t think the three hat started was the right one. Halliday, Barton and Kranjcar are all technically good on the ball but you need at least one runner from the midfield area. Windass and Holt offer that and will both be fully fit soon enough.

Saturdays result has again put the blame on the defence but if were being honest it wasn’t entirely there fault. If the midfield and attack performed to the level they are capable of, we’d have won the match 3 or 4-1. Warburton has said that he wants another defender, so it’s just a case of being patient for the next 28 days before the window shuts, but ideally it would be better to have someone ready to play against league leaders Dundee.

With regards to attack, if Waghorn’ injury is a hamstring; he could be side-lined for 2 months which would us really lightweight upfront. We have yet to really see Joe Dodoo to make an informed judgement, but to pin our attacking hopes on a player who’s played a handful of first team games is quite a risk. Kenny Miller age will catch up with him eventually and hasn’t been overly impressive in this pre-season.

To challenge for this title, we need the mentality that anything less than 3 points every week won’t cut it. Of course our squad is good enough on paper but there needs to be a realisation that it’s going to be extremely hard in our first season back. Despite this, we did go to Motherwell and come away with a good 2-0 away win so we shouldn’t be panicking.

The crowd was unbelievable. Joey Barton said it’s the best atmosphere he’s played in front of and it’s understandable why. We have to keep up this level of support throughout the season if we want to have a good campaign.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s