Glasgow Rangers enjoyed a steady rise under their previous manager Steven Gerrard, gradually putting various domestic disappointments behind them to eventually win the Premiership title in 2021. It was the Ibrox club’s 55th league title overall and completed a miraculous journey back to the summit of Scottish football.
Gerrard brought in some excellent additions to the Rangers squad, with the likes of Joe Aribo, Ryan Kent and Connor Goldson all being integral parts of the team who won the much-coveted title, each ranking in the squad’s top five WhoScored performers in 2020/21.
However, the 42-year-old was also at fault for a few players leaving Ibrox earlier than they should have, especially considering their performances for their future clubs, with Matt Polster one such man.
The USA international signed for the club in January 2019 from Chicago Fire following a successful trial period. He made 91 appearances for the MLS side and won an international cap for his country in 2018 due to his impressive performances.
The American was signed as cover for captain James Tavernier at right back and he could also play in a defensive midfield role, but he couldn’t make the breakthrough to a regular first-team slot, gaining just ten appearances in total for the Light Blues.
Gerrard let him leave for New England Revolution for a fee of £400k in the summer of 2020, and following Polster’s success across the Atlantic, this was maybe an oversight on the Englishman’s part.
The 29-year-old has only recently signed a new contract at the MLS club and appears to be in the best form of his career, with American soccer insider Tom Bogert saying that Polster has been “one of the league’s best DMs” since returning to his homeland.
With Rangers suffering back-to-back thrashings at the hands of Celtic and Ajax recently, conceding four goals in both matches and 16 in total this season, a player in the mould of the American could well have done an excellent job of screening the back four and solidifying the midfield.
Gerrard will forever be remembered at Rangers as the manager who guided the club to perhaps the most important league title in its history, but letting Polster leave for next to nothing wasn’t one of his wisest moves at Ibrox.