Is Gerrard era bringing Ibrox back to its magnificent best?
Fifty thousand sell out. Fans singing in the rain. A big European match. There’s nothing quite like it when Ibrox is like this, and these are only the qualifiers.
Rangers fans have been through their fair share of ups and downs over the last decade or so, with one of the most stinging criticisms being that Ibrox Stadium is no longer the raucous fortress it once was.
A combination of ill feeling amongst supporters and a sub-par playing squad have made record breaking defeats on our home turf feel a million times worse. It felt like a genuine disharmony between the players and the fans.
That’s not what I seen last night.
Ibrox was vibrating from before the first whistle and there was a genuine sense of togetherness amongst supporters which has been missing from recent campaigns. No whinging, no derision, and plenty of singing. It starts with Gerrard, is carried by the players and ends with the fans. We got behind the team, but it’s the first step in a long journey this season.
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Harnessing this good feeling starts by trusting the players and believing they are onside with the club and what Gerrard is trying to achieve. I genuinely believe supporters are starting to buy into this team, and vice versa, the team are starting to buy into them.
It hasn’t been easy but as Rangers have slinked their way up through the divisions, with numerous false dawns in between, there quite simply hasn’t been this level of stability at the club for years, at least when it comes to the playing squad and backroom personnel. The revolving door, it feels, is about to slam shut.
For the first time in a long time, we’ve finally got something to sing about. Not that we didn’t before, but previous playing squads struggled to deal with an expectant support and admittedly, some very harsh words. Gerrard protects this team, shoulders the responsibility, and leads from the front.
Europe is a difficult stage to gauge how fans will perform in league matches – where the feeling against Rangers is significantly more intense – but you can bet that opposition managers and players will no longer be boasting about how easy it is to play here.
The fans are buzzing. Gerrard’s leading the charge. The Blue, Blue, Blue Sea of Ibrox might just be getting back to it’s beautiful, inspiring, magnificent best.