Glasgow Rangers seem to have weathered the storm, for the time being at least, after Steven Gerrard’s side came from behind to beat Motherwell to move 16 points clear of Celtic at the summit of the Scottish Premiership.
Rangers have won 16 of their past 18 games in the Premiership this season, having dropped points against Livingston and Hibernian so far, via Transfermarkt.
But for all of their recent success, it has failed to cover up some of the cracks, as their unbeaten start to the season was abruptly cut short after they were dumped out of the Scottish League Cup by St Mirren, despite the board splashing the cash in the summer.
Gerrard finally got what he wanted all along when Ross Wilson brought in Bongani Zungu from French Ligue 2 side Amiens on an initial loan deal with the option to buy, but the South African midfielder has arguably struggled to hit the ground running.
This means that the Ibrox boss only really has two viable options for the central midfielder role – until June at the very latest, with Steven Davis and Zungu vying for a place behind any combination consisting of Scott Arfield, Joe Aribo, Glen Kamara and Ryan Jack.
Barring a coronavirus outbreak, an injury crisis could cause some awkward problems, which is why Gerrard should consider recalling Rangers loanee Stephen Kelly in January, and he really ought to do so after Ross County manager Stuart Kettlewell was sacked after the defeat to Hamilton.
The Staggies slumped to a 2-0 defeat to the Accies in Dingwall on Saturday afternoon as their dreadful run of form continued, leaving them four points adrift at the bottom of the table.
But Kelly has been one of the few bright sparks in a dismal campaign for the Highlands club, having contributed to two goals in four starts so far this season.
The 20-year-old central midfielder starred as the Staggies battled to a hard-fought draw with Livingston, setting up Oli Shaw to open the scoring in the first half before Livi hit back after the break.
His former loan manager Ian McCall hailed the young talent after he scored his first league goal for Ayr United, saying: “It was a touch of absolute class to win the game for us. Total technique, he’s a wonderful footballer. I love him to death. I think he’s magic to watch.”
With Davis entering the final few months of his current deal, this is where Kelly can come into the foray. Just like he did with Davis, Gerrard can transform the Scotland U21 international into a deep-lying playmaker, capable of playing further forward and unlocking defences with long balls over the top.
He’s certainly shown he has the ability, as he has managed more assists than Zungu across all competitions this season so far.
It’s about time the Ibrox boss started to put his faith in the youth system, that’s for sure.