Kenny Miller, Kris Boyd and Getting Real

Kris Boyd, courtesy of SNS

Written by – Jonny McFarlane

Sometimes I read the blogs and comments of Rangers fans and despair.  While some have an impressive understanding of the dubious methods employed by board members and the severity of the financial situation, there are others who just can’t grasp the here and now.  There is talk about Porto and Ajax, of scouting networks scouring the world for the best talent and of youth players being blended into the first team.  I myself have spent much time musing on such issues and criticising Ally McCoist  for his lack of ambition and foresight but there comes a time when someone somewhere must face up to the stark reality of where Rangers are.

One only has to read the comments on some of the articles on this very website to see how out of touch  some supporters really are.  There are fans out there who suggest signings that are in contract:  “we could get him for 250k” they say apparently blissfully unaware of the clubs on-going financial predicament.  They need to wake up and smell the coffee: Rangers won’t be paying fees for anyone for at least another season.  It’s free transfers or nothing because the club is in financial meltdown.

In this context, talk of ‘the Ajax model’ is patently ridiculous.  The chance was there of course.  When Charles Green took charge, it was the perfect time to implement such a model and rebuild the football club with the IPO money.  Times have changed.  The cash has been squandered and the club remains underdeveloped in key areas of the football department while the business rocks from one crisis to the next.

Next season is the first back at the full-time level of the game and sees strong competition from Hearts and potentially Hibs in a bloodbath of a title race.  With no money and no long-term plan, the key priority is moving forward:  to win the Championship.  The ‘Ajax model’ will have to wait.  There is no money, time, nor inclination to implement it.

With the departure of the likes of Little, Hutton, Simonsen and Cribari, it can be assumed that approximately 15k has been removed from the Ibrox wage bill.  Common sense might suggest that, given my comments about the fiscal situation, this might best be kept as a year on year saving but this notion has to be balanced against the remaining squads chances of promotion.  Assuming that Hearts will be  a tough proposition with their talented youngsters and Craig Levein in charge, it seems to me that the footballing department needs strengthening to guarantee promotion to the Premiership.  If Hibs are relegated this becomes even more pertinent.

I have long advocated for the removal of McCoist but the realist in me accepts that this isn’t going to happen.  Whatever transfer moves Rangers make have to make sense in the context of his ‘team building’.  With that in mind the arrival of Kenny Miller and Kris Boyd make perfect sense and should be celebrated as clear improvements on the current squad.  All other arguments aside, surely nobody is going to argue that they improve the starting eleven.

Kris Boyd, courtesy of Jeff Holmes/SNS

Regardless of what you think about the limitations of either, both are more than good enough to cut a swath through this Championship.  Boyd in particular has looked excellent in the top flight scoring 22 goals in a struggling team and adding many new aspects to his all round play.  At just 30 years old his signing is so obvious its like a cold, hard slap to the face.  Who could do a better job, would agree to sign and be free?

If you listen to some, the club should be using its (non-existent) scouting structure to pick up a talented foreigner (unwanted by other clubs), an unpolished diamond and sell him for millions in three years time.  If it were only that easy.  Look at Celtic and their much heralded system.  For every Hooper there’s a Pukki, for every Wanyama there’s a Rogic and for every Izaguirre there’s a Juarez.  Can Rangers afford to spend a single penny of their wage budget on a mibbie-aye, mibbie-naw?  In the face of adversity, you need certainty and Boyd delivers 25 goals next year with ease.

Kenny Miller, courtesy of SNS

Kenny Miller is harder to justify at 35 and would not represent a solid three year investment in the same way as Boyd. I haven’t seen him since last year’s England v Scotland match at Wembley (where he was superb) but he cannot keep that electric pace forever.  Regardless, at championship level, partnered with Boyd, Miller should still have enough in the tank to be a threat and certainly register as an improvement on Nicky Clark.  We know, like Boyd, Miller has the mentality to be a Ranger and that can often be the singular most important factor to success at the club.

It’s important to remember, to keep stressing, that Rangers are a Championship club and need to sign players accordingly.  The players do not need to be at a level to challenge Celtic and European clubs, rather Dumbarton and Queen of the South.  Boyd and Miller will do that, no problem at all.  Everything else is secondary to the reality of the situation and they should be welcomed back with open arms.


11 thoughts on “Kenny Miller, Kris Boyd and Getting Real

  1. I agree with the article. Don’t see Miller as a great idea, but will buy into it as a short term step. But we also need to bring in a good quality Centre Back. McCulloch is too old for premiership and Mohsni is not good enough. So we need to bring one in this summer and then a second one next summer. Obvious choices would be Gunning or Motherwell boy (is it Hutchison) who are both out of contract.

    Everything else can wait imho.


    1. Yes, experience is needed for what will be the most competitive 2nd tier football league has ever had, indeed in my opinion surpasses the premier league. Out of contract players will be the shout and after ridding of driftwood Allys obsession of playing players out of position would not surprise anyone if he played Daly at c/back to accommodate Boyd/Miller. We as Gers supporters, if we are honest, haven’t the patience for youth to develop as we all should understand that we would not get the consistency sustained through a long season. We are where we are and as supporters /followers buy your season tickets to strengthen our clubs AIM to win the Championship league 14/15.


    2. I agree, Boyd makes sense and Miller can only be a good thing albeit in the short term. Rangers need tried and trusted players and these guys are an obvious improvement, I don’t understand the moaning of so many fans.


  2. Yeah it would be a no risk pair of signings , add a centre half , Hutchison would be good,and Scott Allen for midfield .This kid looked the real deal before getting lost in England.My only concern then would be Right Back , Foster has been terrible , passing awful , panics under pressure.Would love Alan Hutton back but I know we can`t afford it .Anyone got any ideas ? If no signing play McAusland , he is inexperienced but he gets forward well and likes a tackle .


  3. The long ball game has to be binned, create from C. Bell a strong spine through to striker. Our captain has had his day and important to get a strong centre back to play alongside Mohsni, but as commented previously methinks Daly, probably better there than lead weight up front. I’m not being cynical but realistic on seasons observation.


  4. I wish I could share your cold-logic analysis, Jonny. As much as I can see the merits of both Boyd and Miller playing next year, I just can’t find a reason for celebrating as you suggest. I’m still pissed off at the utter laziness and lack of imagination in it all, furious at how openly nobody at the club gives a toss.


  5. Rangers might not do to well next season under Ally. Guy is a legend but not a very good club manager maybe at some point we could get McColl or Macinnes. Definately bring back Boyd


  6. We need decent players in for next season and i would be looking for the club to build round players like Wallace,McLeod,Gallagher etc. two decent centre backs is a must with someone who can come in at RB who can defend and get up the pitch. we need more flair and pace in midfield and for me a two strikers in Miller and Boyd. 6-7 additions for me with a massive clear out of the squad and the high wage merchants


  7. we need consistancy at the next level to match a better fitness regime sharper in midfield and no crazy defending millar and boyd will score plenty with service and a fit templeton will be key to this rangers need to add right this time and the front two is a positive start maybe three more decent signings will be enough but the powers that be do not fill any bear with much optomisim at this moment fingers cross eh


  8. after watching numerous rangers games…the defence suspect…and needs to improved upon if we are going to get promoted again….Think theyre has to be long term coaching improvements for us to move forward….


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