When Steven Gerrard was appointed Rangers manager back at the start of May, a lot of Rangers fans were hoping that the Liverpool legend would bring back success to the club after a rough few years since their financial troubles back in 2012.
It was a risky move from the Rangers board, as Gerrard had little no experience as a manager and his past as a football legend was one of the driving factors in his appointment. Gerrard had done surprisingly well during his first few months at the club, and it was clear from the get go that his side would be challenging for all three titles. Rangers quickly made their way to the top of the Scottish Premiership and cruised their way into the Scottish League Cup semi-final, as well as making an impact in Europe, as they narrowly missed out on progressing past the group stages of the Europa League.
Fast forward to March and the Glasgow club’s season is practically over following their defeat and elimination to Aberdeen at Ibrox in their Scottish FA Cup quarter-final replay. The result was unexpected by many, as the Gers clearly had the home advantage and they did well enough to hold the Dons to a goalless draw at Pittodrie.
— Aberdeen FC (@AberdeenFC) March 12, 2019
After the match, Gerrard said: “It’s a huge blow, it was a huge blow for the club, for myself, the players and the fans. We’ve let the supporters down and I take full responsibility for it. We were nowhere near good enough tonight and I thought that the best team won.”
“We started the game extremely poor and we never got much better from there. We’ve gifted away the first goal and everyone knows that Aberdeen are a tough nut to crack, and that was the case.” The ex-Liverpool legend also stated that he hadn’t gone in to speak to the players because he doesn’t think it’s the “right time” nor he feels ready to speak with them just yet because he’s “angry”.
Back in October we wrote about whether or not Gerrard’s reign at Rangers should end and it was harsh to jump to that conclusion, as the Gers had everything to play for. Rangers have failed to win the League Cup, are out of the FA Cup and are trailing league leaders Celtic by 8 points. So, what went wrong for Rangers and should Gerrard actually get the sack? If the Rangers board was looking for instant success with at least one trophy this season- which is more than likely the case due to the fact Celtic have been winning nearly everything for the last seven years- then yes, but if it’s more of a long-term project, then obviously no.
It just feels like any other season for Rangers, and a lack of trophies has now become the norm at the club, with relative success in Europe, 2nd place finishes in the league and a rare victory over Celtic in any competition as the main achievements for the Glasgow club. In fact, it was perhaps Rangers most recent win over Celtic that lulled them into a false sense of security, as the Gers’ victory may have got to their heads.
Rangers have a crucial game against Celtic in the Scottish Premiership at the end of the month that could really mount the pressure on Celtic if the Gers win, but even then it’s a long shot. It would be crazy for Rangers to get rid of Gerrard at this point in the season, as the club has little to nothing to play for and with only a slim chance of them winning the league, so the ex-Liverpool legend might not see out the end of the season.