Gareth McAuley frozen out at Rangers with Ibrox future looking bleak
Photo by Andrew Surma/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Gareth McAuley frozen out at Rangers with Ibrox future looking bleak

When Gareth McAuley joined Rangers in the summer, it looked to be a great move for both parties.
The Gers knew they were bringing in a vastly experienced centre-back, proven at the highest level.
With 80 international caps for Northern Ireland and over 200 Premier League appearances for West Brom, a free transfer seemed like a steal.

McAuley scored his country’s first ever goal in the European Championships against Ukraine, in 2016. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)

For the player, approaching 39 years of age, it served as one final challenge.
A drop out of the Premier League, but to a massive club where he would play in front of packed houses every week.
Everything about the deal was a no brainer.
However, it simply hasn’t went to plan.

The towering defender clearly looks after himself well. Anyone who is still playing at his age, needs to have had good habits throughout their career.
Yet, since arriving at Rangers, injuries have crept into the picture. A serious calf problem, and further niggling muscle injuries prevented him from getting a run in the side.

He only has eleven Rangers appearances to his name to date. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Short of match fitness, he struggled badly against Kilmarnock after the winter break.

Since then, he’s been more or less frozen out of the first team picture.
Connor Goldson and Joe Worrall are now the undisputed first choice centre-backs at the club. With those two at the helm, Rangers have only conceded once from open play in their last eight matches.
Furthermore, Nikola Katic now looks to be the next cab off the rank if there’s an injury.

Katic is a firm fan favourite and is currently waiting in the wings. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Due to his age, it was only a one-year contract that McAuley signed back in September.
With that in mind, it looks increasingly unlikely that he will make a lasting mark at Ibrox.
We will soon be entering the final throes of the season, and with the veteran currently unable to force his way into match day squads, his chances of a new deal look slim to none.

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