Aaron Ramsey will go down in Rangers folklore for all the wrong reasons as his missed penalty against Eintracht Frankfurt costs the Gers the Europa League.
The Welsh international has been a bit part player for the Ibrox club since signing in January and whilst the emotion of the result is still raw, his time in Glasgow has proven a senseless indulgence that has cost Rangers dearly domestically and in Europe.
Even the fact that the Juventus loanee was subbed on for a heartbroken Fashion Sakala, perhaps with a view to taking a spot kick, is a subplot to this Final that Glasgow Rangers did not need.
It’s about the club, not about Aaron Ramsey, and this senseless indulgence in the injury-plagued midfielder’s Hollywood redemption story has cost the club big.
The midfielder’s tame down the middle effort, saved by the trailing legs of Kevin Trapp in the Frankfurt goal, was hopelessly predictable.
There’s barely a Rangers fan I’ve spoke to who didn’t see this coming as soon as he grabbed the ball.
By Rangers subbing Ramsey on and offering him this opportunity Gio switched the emphasis and focus on the club’s biggest night onto a footballing personality who – if we’re being quite honest – hasn’t offered enough to our club since joining.
Yes, there was immense fanfare when the Welshman joined but he’s barely been able to string together a good 60 minutes in a Rangers shirt and everybody in football knew fine well about the injury issues.
Domestically, after sleeping in two transfer windows and letting Celtic catch up and overtake us, the signing of Aaron Ramsey was clearly not enough for us to retain the title.
It’s been a disaster – let’s not sugarcoat it.
Aaron Ramsey missed penalty costs Rangers in Europa League Final
Penalty kicks are a lottery – we hear this a lot – and it’s true that absolutely any footballer can miss from the spot.
It’s true also that this has been a monumental effort from the Rangers side and the club, players and support can be proud of our journey this season. Ramsey has had a small contribution to that on the pitch and perhaps a big one off it.
But as we pick up the pieces of Seville it rankles with me that we gave a big personality player, whom we owe absolutely nothing, precedence over the glory of the club.
Had the likes of Connor Goldson stepped up and missed, it would’ve been more palatable. Someone who is focused on the club, and what it means to us all. Someone who has at least shown us that they understand.
Instead, it’s a player whose offered Rangers little but headlines about injuries since joining and whilst it’s nothing personal – and it takes courage to step up – it’s something the fans will regret for a long time.
I know the guy will be hurting, of course he is, but for Rangers it just feels like this was an avoidable subplot and we’ve put this above the best interests of the side.
We’re also hurting and perhaps I’ll revisit this opinion in the days to come, but something didn’t sit right with Ramsey stepping up at the time and it doesn’t sit right now.