Chris Sutton has slammed Rangers’ performances in domestic competition this season, in a piece for the Daily Record.
The former Celtic striker turned controversial pundit, believes perceived progress made under Steven Gerrard, is being grossly exaggerated.
Therefore, after praising the Europa League run, he tries to pick apart Rangers’ season.
“Domestically? I’m sorry but it’s been dreadful” he wrote in the Daily Record. “Pure and simple.”
“Celtic have been flat as a pancake and the door was wide open for Rangers to walk through.
“Instead of taking that walk, Gerrard and his team are still stood at the bottom of the driveway. There has been a catalogue of errors.”
He goes on to cover the two disappointing cup exits at the hands of Aberdeen. Furthermore, he addresses Rangers’ record against the teams currently third, fourth and fifth in the league.
Gerrard’s side have won just once in nine matches against that opposition.
Sutton continued: “Three attempts at beating Killie? Didn’t do it once. Three cracks at Hibs? No wins. A win over Aberdeen at Pittodrie. That’s it.
“That is a desperate statistic for a Rangers team.”
Sutton rarely has a positive word to say about Rangers, so many of his comments shouldn’t be a surprise.
He exaggerates on a regular basis and often rants away on TV just for attention. That riles up Bears and ex-player, Alex Rae, recently called him out as a ‘Celtic cheerleader’ [BT Sport YouTube].
Within the context of recent seasons, ‘dreadful’ is not an accurate description of being second in the league, eight points clear of third.
However, while the delivery is over the top, there is a point being made here.
Most Gers followers, myself included, argue that there has been progression this season.
The style of football has improved, Old Firm games are more evenly matched and so on.
Yet, some of those stats really are poor. The failure to beat an average Hibs team, is particularly galling, while Aberdeen turned up with kids at Ibrox last month and came away with three points.
There’s a chance to right a few of those wrongs when coming up against the same opposition over the coming weeks.
It’s worth reminding ourselves that there’s still a way to go, though. Rangers have consistently struggled against the teams around them and whether it comes from new additions or tactical alterations, that needs to change next season.