Gareth McAuley - “Second is nowhere at this club – that’s basically it,”

Bonnyloyal

Well-Known Member
#1
Having spent much of his career defying expectations with club and country, Gareth McAuley is now confronting the challenge of having to fulfil them on a weekly basis at Rangers.

It was a demand he and his team-mates could not meet on Wednesday night as the club’s return to the top of the league for the first time in seven years proved short-lived.

The 1-0 defeat to Aberdeen at Ibrox, the first home loss suffered under Steven Gerrard’s management, raised fresh doubts over whether the Rangers squad have the mental strength required for a sustained and successful title tilt.

Veteran defender McAuley admits playing for the club he supported as a boy is unlike any of his previous experiences, which include representing Northern Ireland at Euro 2016 and seven years in the English Premier League with West Bromwich Albion.

But he insists he is relishing the relentless scrutiny placed on Rangers and believes he has joined a group of players capable of coping with it.

“Second is nowhere at this club – that’s basically it,” said McAuley as he reflected on the midweek setback which saw Gerrard’s men slip back into second place in the Premiership table, one point behind surprise leaders Kilmarnock and ahead of third-placed 
Celtic on goals scored.

“It’s certainly different to clubs I’ve played at before. It’s intense but it’s enjoyable. It’s a great pressure.

“That demand to win, day in and day out, is what you should have as a footballer. Everyone here has the desire as a group to go and challenge (for the title).

“We need to make sure we win at Dundee on Sunday and win going forward. It’s a massive club and you have a massive responsibility on and off the pitch to make sure we win. We want to get back to the top of the league and stay there.

” It was an unhappy 39th birthday for McAuley on Wednesday as Scott McKenna’s seventh minute goal, which came from a set piece poorly defended by Rangers, proved enough to earn Aberdeen all three points.

As dismayed as he was by their performance, McAuley wasn’t convinced the defeat came as a consequence of Rangers failing to handle the pressure of going into the match as league leaders.

“I’m not sure about that,” he added. “It was the first time in a long time the club had been top of the league but we didn’t talk about that before the game. The focus was on winning game. We knew what Aberdeen were going to do and they did it very well.

“We started slow and got sucked into how they wanted to play, rather than how we wanted to play. We started getting frustrated. That played into their hands.

“They won a lot of free-kicks in the first half, put a lot of balls into the box and scored off one of them. We were disappointed we didn’t defend that better, although McKenna finished it well, to be fair.

“That’s disappointing for me personally and for the other defenders. That’s why we are looking at our own performance as our downfall. We were sitting in the dressing room looking at ourselves after the game.

Our standards dropped individually and as a team. We let ourselves down all over the park from where we have been this season. That’s why we lost the game.

” While much of the focus on Rangers’ quest to restore themselves as a trophy-winning force in Scotland centres on Celtic’s current domestic dominance, McAuley has been impressed by the rest of the Premiership teams since he moved to Ibrox on a free transfer in the summer.

“From what I’ve seen so far, it’s a really competitive league,” he said. “It’s a tough league, it’s tight. We know we have work to do against all of the teams.

“Bubbling under the surface we have that desire to do the hard work. We’ll get back on the training pitch and hopefully put it right on Sunday.”

Read more at: https://www.scotsman.com/sport/foot...gers-a-club-where-second-is-nothing-1-4840589
 

George Goudie

Well-Known Member
Official Ticketer
#4
I don't mind a player admitting they let their standards drop and assuring the supporters that they will do their best on and off the park to rectify matters.

The team played badly - they need to handle the pressure that brings with it and then use it as an incentive to NEVER drop their standards again.
 

Loud and proud

Well-Known Member
#10
I would have to question the mentality of any group of players who only three days before got their noses in front for the first time in a league race only to let their 'standards drop' and lose that lead.
Don't know about anyone else, but if it was me I would be playing out my skin to stay out in front.
Rangers was built on winners not also rans.
 

Torque_87

Well-Known Member
#11
I do at times feel sorry for players in these situations. He's being asked questions and he's answering them as best he can. This squad haven't let us down too often and these interviews aren't as empty and meaningless as they were under the likes of Warbs, Pedro and Murty. I accept, they need to back their words up with a win on Sunday, before they do start to sound like empty sound bites.
 

Melbbear

Well-Known Member
#12
Oh like all the great Rangers team didn’t loose games like that. Just trying to remember how many points did we take of them last year. The first game of the season we gave the a football lesson with 10 men very unlucky not to get three points. It’s old story they all lift there game against us. We’ve played over 30 games in four months that’s some going . Of coarse we are snot happy but it happens but to be honest none of us thought it would be tight as this.
 

ShotaShuffle

Well-Known Member
#17
We go again, we move on and put it right in the next match.

No having a go at McAuley at all but the afore mentioned quote (a favourite of our captain and Warburtons crop) gets right on my bristols
 

bigbluenose

Well-Known Member
#18
Stop doing interviews if a newspaper ask decline.
We can't keep hearing the same quotes as we have for the last 6 years.
We will learn from it will soon be our club mantra
 

Blue Tack

Well-Known Member
#20
Id rather have goldson & worrall every day .

McAuley ( and im being very unfair here ) hasnt impressed me ,if you get past him he's done ,high balls hes terrific ,wins the lot but on the deck against pace ...not for me yet
 

jackstar

Well-Known Member
#23
I would have to question the mentality of any group of players who only three days before got their noses in front for the first time in a league race only to let their 'standards drop' and lose that lead.
Don't know about anyone else, but if it was me I would be playing out my skin to stay out in front.
Rangers was built on winners not also rans.
I don't think Stevie himself expected that performance and seemed as miffed and mystified as we were,he should get them to just keep quiet and take it out on to the pitch,like others have said they should just keep quiet,just adds insult to injury. He should read the riot act after that,rightly so. Still trust Stevie will get it right.
 

Blazing Saddles

Well-Known Member
#35
Mate, it’s all sanitized wankfluff anyway.

Our latest NI soperhero cant keep Aberdeen out ffs.

Trading on the ‘I get it’ card requires ability and not some shitey soundbite we have all heard before.
I just don't get why people get so annoyed by stuff like this. Players rarely choose to do interviews and to most it will feel like a chore, so just say the same stuff repeatedly.

People put far too much stock in what is said in interviews for me.
 

RFC97

Well-Known Member
#40
Never in the mood or interested in what they have to say after performances like that.

All we want is to get your arses back in training and work out how to break down a packed defense.
 

buster60

Well-Known Member
#41
The main thing McAuley got right is that he should be “nowhere” near our club. Signing him and Lafferty has been a gamble that’s gone horribly wrong.
 

derbybear

Well-Known Member
#42
I just don't get why people get so annoyed by stuff like this. Players rarely choose to do interviews and to most it will feel like a chore, so just say the same stuff repeatedly.

People put far too much stock in what is said in interviews for me.
If there were no interviews the same people would be screaming at their lap tops that the players don't give a phuck.
 

crmpicco

Well-Known Member
#47
Heard the same drivel for years now. These players don't have the mental ability to do anything about it...happy to take the tidy wages though.
 
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