The Chalkboard: Gerrard’s striker conundrum over after Morelos’ four-goal haul


Rangers manager Steven Gerrard has faced his biggest selection conundrum when he has had both Alfredo Morelos and Jermain Defoe available for selection following the latter’s January arrival, but it has been put to bed once and for all after the former’s four-goal haul on Wednesday night.

On the chalkboard

Well, Morelos had been starring up top on his own in either a 4-2-3-1 or 4-3-3 system in the first-half of the season, but the loan signing of Defoe last month gave Gerrard plenty to think about as the 36-year-old would have wanted regular starts after moving north of the border on an 18-month loan deal.

The Liverpool legend switched to a 4-4-2 diamond formation instantly to accommodate both but it ended in disaster as the Scottish Premiership giants were beaten 2-1 by Kilmarnock, and the manager has barely reverted to using it again since.

The 38-year-old opted for a 4-1-4-1 system for the Scottish Cup replay against Killie on Wednesday with Colombian getting the nod, and he showed his quality by finding the net on four occasions in the 5-0 thrashing.

Conundrum over

While Defoe is clearly a great player who has been goalscorer throughout his career, he isn’t the future of Rangers and shouldn’t get the nod if the club is playing a formation with room for only one centre-forward.

Three goals and four assists in seven appearances for the Glasgow outfit to date is certainly a positive start to life in Scotland for the veteran English striker, but Morelos is 22 years of age and has once again just proved how lethal he can be.

The South American looks destined to go on to bigger and better things at some stage and taking that into consideration, Gerrard needs to utilise him and play him as much as he can while he is still at Ibrox.