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The Big Squad


Davy
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Are we now starting to see the benefit of having a big squad?

Over the festive period, where a lot of football has been played, we have seen Celtic drop points and us take advantage of that, despite a draw in Aberdeen.

And despite the injury's to Beasley, Novo and Darcheville and suspensions kicking in, we have been able to cope and even progress in the league.

Guys like Burke, Hemdani and even Naismith have been able to come into the squad from the fringes and do a good job for us.

In contrast, when you look at them across the City, they have stumbled across a difficult time when a lot of fixtures were to be played. They have remained with the same two strikers and basically the same midfield, causing them a loss of form. They don't have anywhere near the options we do, and I think that could be their downfall.

At the start of the season people were saying that we had bought quantity of quality, maybe so, but it may well win us the league.

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Well this has been the first season in aeons where we cannot say "We have missed whoever because of injury" because of this big squad. We have indeed lost key players (Beasley, Smith, Novo) over the period but because of our strength in depth, there has been no drop in form or results due to these losses. Not wishing to jinx our cause, but I cannot forsee any player being irreplaceable at the moment. If Hutton were to be injured (or sold!), Whittaker would go there, Weir and Cuellar have Webster waiting in the wings and even Macgregor has Ex Man U goalie Carroll biding his time, although Im not too confident on that one!

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I agree, last season we crying in our lagers because we didn't have enough decent players who could cover, it was pretty poor in the first 11 never mind the cover!

Now we do have a larger squad and have a lot more options at our disposal and depending on who we play have a better opportunity at changing formations etc.

As for people saying that the players brought in don't have the quality, I disagree with this to a certain extent, just because most of us can remember the days of Gazza and Laudrap etc where we could buy almost the cream of Europe, whose to say that Gow, Broadfoot or any of the other signings can't one day prove to be an exceptional signing by Walter Smith. Remember they must have seen something in these players to sign them, and yes they are probably signed to be cover players, but day in day out they are getting the best training opportunities which will only help them improve their game, and when they get the chance they will be hungry to prove that they are worthy to wear the Rangers top.

As for the long term, I think some credit also needs to be given to the backroom staff, the dieticians, trainers etc who are all working together to help the players become fitter and healthier than what they have probably been in the last couple of seasons, and I think this also goes towards the improvement in the team.

Not forgetting the hunger the team themselves are showing this season through their own personal pride to succeed. :rangers:

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If we were realistically going to challenge for the title this season we needed a drastic overhaul in the summer and we got it and now we have the players available that are capable of winning this league.

I still feel though that Walter is still trying to find his settled first choice 11 when all players are fit, which is a good thing as we are playing very well and its still a relatively new team we have, and 1 or 2 more quality players to come in to the first team and we will be looking like a real team :rangers:

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We have a very solid base now which is allowing us to compete for the title. With quality added in the summer we will once more be the team to fear in the SPL. Back where we belong.

:rangers:

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A settled 11 would be the best thing, I think. I am totally against the rotation policy that we see happening more and more now.

However, we have been tested by absences and the big squad means we were able to cover those absences without loosing track of our rivals.

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I wouldn't like to see a rotation policy either and I don't think we're THAT strong yet anyway.

To have the cover for injuries and suspensions and make people fight for there places is good to see though.

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yep im encouraged this season by whats happening,the bigger squad might mean the diffrence between winning and losing the title,although i questioned smiths signing at the start of the season hes proved right with the mix of first team players and squad players hes brought in,just a pity beasley and darch havent really shown what they could bring consistantly coz of injury but overall some very good progress from last season.

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