Many Rangers fans were looking forward to a pretty busy January transfer window as manager Philippe Clement looked to further improve the form and results of the first team squad that he inherited from former gaffer Michael Beale.
Having made the switch to Ibrox back in mid-October, the 49 year old former Belgian international defender has more than hit the ground running, and with the fifth round Scottish Cup victory over Ayr United this weekend, Clement’s record is 20 wins in 24 games, with only one defeat and if you use any casino online, you would have had to make a few spins of the roulette wheel to think he would have such an immediate impact.
After our more difficult start to the 2023/24 campaign, we are right back on track for a Scottish Premiership title tilt, and with last month seeing the arrival of Mohamed Diomande, and Oscar Cortes and Fabio Silva on loan, there is every reason to believe the second half of the campaign will be just as strong.
One player who has proven key for Clement is goalkeeper Jack Butland, as his performances for us in recent months could well now see him revive his international career with England. The 30 year old stopper already has nine caps to his name, and Gareth Southgate has recently confirmed that he is back on ‘his radar’ for the upcoming friendly games against Brazil and Belgium, despite the fact he has now featured for them since June 2019.
“It is up in the air – I can’t deny that. So, again, we have to make sure we’re watching everybody – Jack Butland included – because he’s obviously playing at a big club and is an experienced keeper. We’ll have to see how it plays out.”
Whilst Butland would be the stand out for many fans given his performances so far this campaign, he is certainly not the only player that has shown even further improvement and has redeveloped some great consistency following Clement’s arrival. 26 year old Scott Wright is another who seems to be enjoying an, albeit slightly different, new lease of life under our new gaffer.
With plenty of talk of a departure in the first half of the season, the winger has now stated that is ‘well in the past’ and that even though he is only being used mainly as a substitute, he is again relishing life at the club.
“That’s football. It’s so up and down. All I can do is just stay focussed and give 100% wherever I am. There was talk of me leaving. That’s well in the past now and I love it here. I’m really enjoying working under the new manager.”
Wright was also full of praise for how the gaffer has got his ethos and ideas over to the squad, particularly as the games kept coming quick and fast in the very early days, but of course, with the recent warm weather training camp out in La Manga far more has been worked on, and he believes that the fans will see that come to the fore quite quickly as the players have been taking it all on board, and in some senses Wright appears to suggest that this ‘absolute critical’ break could well be the defining factor on whether or not we can clinch first place this year.
Whether we can do that, or we push it close and fall at the last hurdle, with the gaffer already wanting further improvement, next season could well be a very special one after he has a full summer to wheel and deal and truly get the squad shaped, and drilled in the way he wants it.
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