Former Rangers assistant manager Davie Weir believes expectations were too high at Ibrox when they won promotion under Weir and Mark Warburton in 2016 – and thinks that after five years out of the top division the Gers would’ve had no right to lift the trophy in their first season back.
The Ibrox giants were demoted to the Third Division in 2012 and after two attempts at promotion from the Championship (re-named from the First Division as the Gers climbed the leagues) finally returned for the start of the 2016/17 season.
After a disappointing first six months of the campaign, Warburton and Weir resigned and the former Gers captain thinks key signings made that summer not working out didn’t help the Light Blues whatsoever.
“So we brought in a few players, it didn’t quite work out. Obviously Joey (Barton), you know. We signed Joey, he was the best Championship midfielder that season. It didn’t work out at Rangers for whatever reason,” Weir told Open Goal, as quoted by the Scottish Sun.
“We signed Jordan Rossiter who was, in my mind, the best young English midfielder at that age. He got injured, that didn’t quite work out. We signed Niko Kranjcar who got injured as well.
“So it just seemed like things didn’t quite work out for in terms of how quickly people expected us to be where they felt they needed us to be.
“You always think you can win the league but if you look at it objectively what right have Rangers coming back in to the Premiership having not been there for five years with, no disrespect to the lads we had in the squad, how can that team be expected to win the league?”
Football Insider verdict:
Weir would maybe have more of a point if the Light Blues weren’t so disappointing that season. Although the Gers were only just promoted they were also spending a huge amount more on players and wages than the likes of Ross County – who the Gers failed to beat in three attempts that season – or Partick Thistle. The Gers did have some unfortunate injuries but that is part of football and it isn’t as if they didn’t get replacements in over the course of the campaign. For the three midfielders that Rangers did lose over the course of that season, they also brought Emerson Hyndman and Jon Toral in from Arsenal and Bournemouth, respectively, so there was at least a little cause for optimism from Gers fans. Weir and Warburton also seem to never take any responsibility for their insistence on sticking with a formation regardless of how the game is going and admittedly not having a Plan B.
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