Former Rangers manager Alex McLeish has rubbished comparisons between Steven Gerrard taking the reins at Ibrox and when McLeish succeeded Dick Advocaat as Gers boss in 2001 – insisting “they were different days” for the Ibrox giants.
Gerrard officially got started on Friday as he looks to stop Celtic’s recent domination of Scottish football and McLeish believes Gerrard will need to “build a whole new team” this summer if he is going to have any hope of putting up a challenge against Brendan Rodgers’ side.
McLeish concedes there are some similarities between the two but admits Gerrard’s name won’t be enough to carry him through – telling the Gers boss he needs to have the right quality in his side to compete.
“They were different days,”McLeish said, as quoted by the Evening Times.
“While there are some similarities in the sense that Steven will have to try and get more out of the players who are already there, I also believe he has to build a whole new team. That’s something I never had to do. Just appointing a big name is still not enough though, because you need the players to mount a challenge.”
Football Insider verdict:
McLeish took over at a difficult point in Rangers’ recent history but is in an absolute stroll in the park compared with the circumstances the club find themselves in now. Gerrard isn’t inheriting a squad with the quality of Ronald de Boer and Gio van Bronckhorst or able to bring the likes of Mikel Arteta to the club from under the noses of Paris St, Germain. As McLeish said, it is “different days” for the Gers and there’s nothing that makes that quite so clear as the quality of player at the manager’s disposal. Gerrard faces a massive task to get the Gers in a position to launch a serious title challenge but it certainly isn’t impossible and with the right additions over the coming weeks, the Light Blues could be in a much better position already to try to stop Celtic from making in eight titles in a row.