Rangers continued their pre-season preparations with a disappointing 1-0 friendly defeat against English League Two Tranmere Rovers.
It might only be the second clash of a six-game friendly schedule in pre-season but as expected, there are some grumbles.
Rangers lacked sharpness in the final third and despite showing promise at various stages in the game struggled to make a breakthrough.
Tranmere Rovers won the game with a wonderful long-range strike from ex-Liverpool midfielder Jay Spearing in the first half.
Scott Wright, Jermain Defoe and Kemar Roofe were all guilty of snatching at chances with a Defoe header knocked off the line with the goalkeeper in no-man’s land.
But it was players who are further out on the fringes of the squad who failed to grab their opportunity on Merseyside with exits from Ibrox almost certain.
That means this could be a pivotal summer for many on the outside of the team and Gerrard told RTV post-match that the standard was “nowhere near good enough”.
Gerrard also said he is “disappointed, “frustrated” and that he “expects” more from his side, reserving small praise for “certain individuals”.
— Rangers Football Club (@RangersFC) July 10, 2021
“People need to impress now and play well, otherwise they’re not going to get many minutes”, finished the Gers gaffer.
In the senior Gers side, there is some fat that needs trimming with George Edmundson, Jordan Jones and Brandon Barker fighting for a space in the squad this season.
Whilst there’s no sense in getting carried away – and the presence of these guys in the squad proves they’ve got a fighting chance to impress – Rangers were lacklustre up front with an entire 45 to turn the match around.
With bigger tests to come, both the XIs on show at Prenton Park will be a long way from Gerrard’s first choice come Livingston.
Especially considering a tranche of first-team internationalists are still to come back into the fold.
But for those handed a chance in the absence of many first-team stars, time is running out to convince the club and the fans that they’ll be in the Ibrox club’s squad next season.
Meanwhile, one Ibrox star is on his way back to Glasgow amid conflicting reports regarding his future at Rangers.