Right midfield, right wing, inside right, wide forward; there’s been various titles for what is a varying role dependent upon how a manager likes to play. Rangers fans of a certain age will have fond memories of players like Tommy McLean, a winger at a time when it was easier to play 2 wingers and 2 forwards. We remember Claudio Reyna playing out there as more of a midfielder, offering balance to the side. We had arguments galore about whether or not Steven Davis was wasted on the right. Whenever a full-back seems to be better at going forward than defending, you’ll have many suggest they should play on the wing. As you can tell, there’s no archetypal right sided midfielder.
As such, the list below is a mixture of styles of player. Some are there due to never really playing well, some due to never coming close to living up to a transfer fee or expectations. There are players I haven’t included due to lack of games, or having been played there to fill a gap rather than it being their position. Again, some of this is limited by my experiences, so there may be players who should be included, and I’d be happy to hear from you all on that.
JUAN MANUEL ORTIZ, 14 APPEARANCES 1 GOAL
Ortiz was signed by McCoist in his first, ill-fated, season as manager. We were told that he was quick, direct and skilful, and came with a decent pedigree from Spanish football.
Now, I know you have to talk up new signings. I get that it’s not always easy to predict how a player is going to adapt, so predictions can look wildly wrong. But surely it’s not difficult to see whether or not a player has pace before you sign them? He was one of the slowest players we’ve ever played in a wide position, and really didn’t have the game to make up for that.
Gone after a season, with no memorable performances.
ANDREI KANCHELSKIS, 113 APPEARANCES 19 GOALS
This one is less about performances and more about a failure to live up to expectations. Kanchelskis was a big signing in the summer where Advocaat was bringing in quality players for relatively big fees. £5.5m was given to Fiorentina to bring him here, with rumours of huge wages being involved as well. We’d all seen him some years before look excellent for Man United, so there was a lot of excitement about him coming in.
If we’re honest, we didn’t get quite the same player. When you look back at highlights from his first couple of seasons with us, he was certainly involved in a lot of good play. There was also his amazing volley against Dunfermline, and his rather ludicrous standing-on-the-ball against Ayr United during his time with us. However, he cost a lot of cash, and as Advocaat preferred a midfield which only contained one wide player from four, he was phased out once McCann was signed and Reyna was available to play on the right.
Never lived up to his fee or hype.
DAVID HAGEN, 18 APPEARANCES 3 GOALS
Hagen was a product of the youth system in the early 90s, a time when we never really maximised the potential of players as signings were easy to make. He was only 19 on his debut but of his 18 appearances, many didn’t seem to result in wins. His three goals all came at home, and his 18 appearances were spread out over three seasons.
Fans tend to get excited by youth prospects, then maybe hold unrealistic expectations over them, but Hagen didn’t do anything of real note at Rangers and struggled to break into a side which was hampered by injury and inconsistency at that time.
NUNO CAPUCHO, 32 APPEARANCES 6 GOALS
Ah, good old Capucho. We’ve had an article discussing his merits, or lack thereof, not so long ago, so I won’t repeat too much of it. Signed in 2003 by McLeish, and coming in with a decent reputation on past performances for Porto, he was never any good for us. Legs looked gone, attitude was questionable at best, and he was probably the wrong option when choosing between him and Chris Burke.
On the field, his only memorable moment was the last minute winner away to Kilmarnock. Off it, I’m sure there’s a girl in Glasgow somewhere who can tell a story…
LIBOR SIONKO, 23 APPEARANCES, 3 GOALS
Sionko was one of the three Austria Vienna players we signed when Le Guen was manager. Of those, he firmly came in the middle in terms of impact and ability. He’s on this list more for a failure to make any real impact than for being a poor player. His first league game against Motherwell, he looked like a smart, direct wide player who would do well for us. What transpired was a player who lost confidence and lacked decent pace, and his impact was minimal at best.
Like many of the Le Guen signings, he didn’t play very often once Walter came back to the club. He seemed to be forever warming up as a sub.
Any comments on the above? Anyone you’d have included? Let us know @rangersnewsuk and we’ll be happy to discuss!