Glasgow Rangers have hardly put a foot wrong and are really cruising through this season so far.
First and foremost, Steven Gerrard’s side dispatched Lech Poznan in the Europa League on Thursday night to top Group D ahead of Monday’s last 32 draw, securing a £900,000 bonus for winning their group as well as £515,000 for qualifying in the process.
The Ibrox boss took the opportunity to rotate his squad as he made seven changes to the team that thumped Ross County at the Global Energy Stadium.
But that doesn’t excuse some of the shocking displays by some who were trusted to start in the first place, as Bongani Zungu picked up a booking almost immediately in only his second start for the 54-time Scottish champions since he arrived at Ibrox from Amiens on an initial loan deal with the option to buy.
The South African looked uncharacteristically out-of-sorts and struggled to cope with the pace of the game at times. He lost possession 10 times and committed three fouls – second only to his teammate Scott Arfield.
With this in mind, Gerrard should consider adjusting the midfield, as he isn’t exactly short of options, with Arfield, Joe Aribo, Steven Davis, Glen Kamara and Ryan Jack all competing for a place in the starting line-up.
Maybe Jack could come back in, but Davis has made such a strong start to the season that we’re backing the Northern Ireland international to replace Zungu alongside Kamara.
The former Rangers captain began his professional career with Premier League club Aston Villa before he was sold to Fulham and ended up on loan at Ibrox, where he helped the team win the 2007-08 Scottish League Cup and Scottish Cup.
After a spell with Southampton, he returned to Rangers in 2019. Since then, he has established himself as a first-team regular starter under Gerrard, having made 80 appearances in all competitions, via Transfermarkt.
Former Rangers boss Alex McLeish recently described him as “incredible” after he became the most-capped player for his country in the Euro 2020 playoff semi-final against Bosnia-Herzegovina back in October, whilst Gerrard has insisted the defensive-minded midfielder “manages himself.”
Davis is almost a like-for-like replacement for Zungu as both thrive on going forwards, but he is also capable of putting in a defensive shift, producing 1.5 tackles and 1.2 interceptions per game in the Premiership so far this season, via WhoScored.
Despite his heroics, he has started just three of the past six games in a row. Therefore, he needs to be unleashed by the Ibrox boss on Sunday and get some more minutes under his belt, as he will no doubt be chomping at the bit.
AND in other news, Robby McCrorie could be Gerrard’s heir to Allan McGregor at Rangers…