Sunday’s 1-0 defeat to Celtic at Ibrox, which was a flat and uninspiring performance from Rangers, was the last straw and there isn’t any way back for Michael Beale. Celtic were missing key players such as Reo Hatate, Cameron Carter-Vickers, and new signings Mailk Nawrocki and Marco Tilio. The Hoops were down to the bare bones and started Liam Scales at the back in his second appearance so far this season.
Despite both sides having poor starts to the season, Michael Beale’s side were hot favourites. The majority of the Rangers faithful felt as though it was going to be an easy day at the office, considering how much money they spent in the summer and the fact no Celtic fans were going to be in attendance due to the ongoing ticket dispute between the Old Firm.
After going out of the Champions League to PSV, losing 7-3 on aggregate, Beale was under pressure to win against Celtic. The Englishman will never get a better opportunity to defeat the Parkhead side. Kemar Roofe’s goal was wrongly chopped off in the first half after VAR believed Cyrial Dessers committed a foul in the build-up. As wrong as that decision was – the Ibrox side didn’t deserve to win that game. Yet again, Beale’s decision-making and tactics have left the Rangers support scratching their heads. Beale spent £13 million on his forward line, and Dessers was the only signing who started up front against Celtic.
Beale’s football has been brutal to watch and in the first half against Celtic, he decided to sit off instead of piling on the pressure and having a go. The midfield was non-existent, and the lack of urgency was astounding. Rangers only had three shots on target out of their 17 shots, which shows how poor they were in the final third. Boos ringed around Ibrox at the decision to bring Roofe off for Sam Lammers – in what was a baffling call as he was the only player who looked like he could score against Brendan Rodgers’ men.
Beale has no excuses anymore, as he’s been backed with his own signings – this is his team. Every big game the Englishman has had, he’s failed to win – he has no credit in the bank. He’s played against Celtic six times and only managed to win one of them, which was an end-of-the-season game that didn’t mean anything.
Giovanni van Bronckhorst got Rangers to a Europa League final, won a Scottish Cup, and was still sacked as manager. It’s a worrying state of affairs that the Rangers side from last season that failed to win anything, played better football and had a clear style of play compared to Beale’s current side.
We’ve seen this movie before and know how it’s going to end – it was crucial for Beale to hit the ground running this season and he’s failed to do that. Rangers haven’t looked convincing in any games and have gone backwards. Beale has been given more than enough time at Ibrox and not dismissing him from his position is only delaying the inevitable.
By: Scott Bradley / @ScottBradleyX
Featured Image: @GabFoligno / Bryn Lennon – Getty Images