Last night, after a disappointing result, the knives were out.
Not for Steven Gerrard, though. Fan reaction to the manager’s post-match interview, was largely positive.
Instead, the usual scapegoat bore the brunt of the criticism.
Captain, James Tavernier.
The right-back didn’t have his best outing.
He undoubtedly made a decisive contribution to Florian Kamberi’s equaliser for the home side.
After going to ground too easily on the edge of the Hibs box, he failed to get into his defensive berth quickly enough.
Had he got himself back and set, the Swiss forward wouldn’t have scored.
What’s more, in general, he didn’t look as sharp as he could have been.
After the game, Bears voiced their displeasure at Tavernier’s showing on social media.
Tavernier is horrific. Never a Rangers captain in a million years.
— ᒪᎥᗩᗰ (@LiamWATP) March 8, 2019
Tav having another howler, never a captain.
— Curtis 🇳🇱 (@CurtisRFC1972) March 8, 2019
Tav cost us yet again time after time
— Grant Kerr (@grantkerr72) March 8, 2019
However, it can’t always be his fault.
Clearly, if Rangers kept a clean sheet last night, they would have won the game.
Yet, to focus in on that is missing the point.
It was hardly out of the question that Hibs would score on their own patch last night. But by the 76th minute, it shouldn’t have mattered whether they found the net or not.
Rangers should have been out of sight
The blame should lie with those players selected to create and to score. They failed to turn possession and chances into goals and that’s the underlying reason why the Gers left the capital disappointed.
Remarkably, for a full-back, it’s actually an area in which, as of the end of last month, Tavernier has done more than any other SPL player this season.
He has now been directly involved in 22 league goals, in comparison to Morelos’ 20. No other Rangers player else even comes close.
Even without penalties, Tavernier would be second on the list of Ibrox contributors.
He does have occasional lapses at the back, there’s no doubt about that. Yet, Rangers had only conceded once in six ahead of last night’s game and he is very much a part of that strong defensive record.
Inevitably, the Gers will concede the odd goal away from home. Every team does.
It’s about outscoring the opposition and he cannot be the scapegoat every time Rangers fail to that end.
Others need to start putting their hand up when the going gets tough.