BBC Scotland journalist Tom English has launched an extraordinary swipe at Rangers for appointing Steven Gerrard as manager – calling it a “gobsmacking appointment” by the Ibrox giants.
The Liverpool icon was confirmed as the next Rangers manager on a four-year deal on Friday and the BBC man has likened it to a “high-wire act with the hungry crocodiles below instead of a safety net.”
Rangers’ bitter rivals have just wrapped up a seventh successive Scottish Premiership title and English thinks the gamble on Gerrard is massive – although concedes it will be “impossible to take your eyes off” his rivalry with his former Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers.
“Gerrard at Rangers, and the intoxicating rivalry with his former Liverpool manager and current Celtic boss, Brendan Rodgers, is going to be impossible to take your eyes off,” English said, as quoted by the Daily Express.
“But this is a gamble from which Amarillo Slim in his pomp at the poker table might have backed away.
“It is a gobsmacking appointment to rank with any in the history of the Scottish game.
“For both parties, but particularly for Rangers, who cannot afford another misstep in management, it’s a high-wire act with the hungry crocodiles below instead of a safety net.”
Football Insider verdict
There are three things you can guarantee in life. Death, taxes and Tom English taking a pop at Rangers for something. Bizarrely English thinks appointing a European Cup winner who spent his entire career at the top level of football is a gamble for Rangers but appointing Derek McInnes or Neil Warnock would have been sound decisions. There is no doubting that Gerrard is a gamble for Rangers but it is no more of a gamble than appointing any other manager who isn’t called Walter Smith. Pep Guardiola would have been a gamble for Rangers but the Gers should be applauded for not going down the predictable route of appointing one of the same faces who have a different club every season but never manage to actually achieve anything of note anywhere. Time will tell if the Gers will live to regret appointing Gerrard but, on the face of it, the Ibrox giants could have made far riskier appointments than someone with a verifiable track record of winning throughout his career. Perhaps Tom is more upset that he was left out when the Gers paraded Gerrard at Ibrox on Friday afternoon as BBC Scotland continue to refuse to allow staff to enter Ibrox or Auchenhowie. Even to cover the biggest story in world football.