Rangers fans have criticised Steven Gerrard for not using Greg Stewart during Sunday’s League Cup final against Celtic.
The 29-year-old attacker has struggled for game time since joining from Birmingham City in the summer but has impressed when he’s been given opportunities, most recently netting a brace in last weekend’s 5-0 drubbing of Hearts.
Yet, despite calls from supporters for him to be used more regularly after that display, the bluenose hasn’t made it onto the pitch in either of Rangers’ last two games.
The 29-year-old made the squad on each occasion but was left on the bench, despite the Gers needing late goals in both fixtures.
Gerrard did make changes at Hampden when the opposition were reduced to ten men, bringing on Jermain Defoe for Glen Kamara, and Brandon Barker for Joe Aribo.
Yet, if anything, the team created fewer opportunities after those changes and some fans felt Stewart was more deserving of a chance than Barker, in particular.
The manager was forced to use his final substitution to replace an injured Filip Helander in the final stages, ensuring that even if he had wanted to, he couldn’t have introduced Stewart for a late cameo.
Clearly, the thinking was to go with pace by bringing Barker on. Yet, with Stewart registering three goals and four assists to Barker’s one goal and no assists to date this season, he would have every right to feel aggrieved with that decision.
Here’s a selection of reactions from fans who thought Stewart should have been deployed:
Why not Stewart
— Robbie (@RibeyeMecum) December 8, 2019
get stewart on
— ⋆ 𝚊𝚖𝚋𝚎𝚛-𝚕𝚎𝚎 ⋆ (@ambxrpeoplxs) December 8, 2019
Barker ?!?!? Game was crying out for some craft and guile, had to be Stewart on not Barker. When you boss a game so thoroughly you need to score, Alf rightly has had praise this year but to be a proper Rangers striker you score in these games.
— Spoon (@457ish) December 8, 2019
😂😂😂😂😂😂 I’d be getting drunk now not trolling Rangers fans particularly after that performance. Anyone think the right side needs to be addressed so Kent stops drifting so much and Aribo is slow as hell. Stewart is the obvious answer but Kent badly needs to stop wandering.
— Gareth Brown (@GazBear77) December 8, 2019
I would have gave Greg Stewart a run when they went down to 10 aribo was poor today also thought Kent wasn't as sharp onto Thursday Rangers qualification is a must 🇬🇧
— John G 🇬🇧 (@johnnyg2307) December 8, 2019
Stewart must not be doing it in training, because based on performances in games he is well ahead of Barker, Ojo, and Aribo for me. I don’t understand that one at all.
— Faceless 👤 (@FacelessRanger) December 8, 2019
Wtf does Stewart need to do?
— The Prof (@Cosmos_Ranger) December 8, 2019
I’d have brought Stewart on.
— 𝓡𝓪𝓷𝓰𝓮𝓻𝓼 𝓑𝓮𝓪𝓻 (@TheRangersBear) December 8, 2019
See I’m Greg Stewart mate I’m banging down Gerrard door and asking why was Ojo the other night ahead of me and why Barker was today.
— Rangers Bantz (@RangersBanter17) December 8, 2019