written by – Jordan Campbell
Rangers strolled to a thoroughly convincing 3-0 victory at home to Peterhead in the First Round of the League Cup and I will be rating each individual’s performance and picking my Three Stars of the Game.
This year though we will be keeping a log of each player’s ratings in all four competitions with a view to crowning our own Rangers Report Player of the Year & Young Player of the Year.
I’ll be taking a stance more akin to that of L’Equipe’s infamously harsh rating system (they’ve only handed out seven 10s in their history) as opposed to the more lenient and easier to please British media. So with that in mind, 6 will constitute an average performance.
But don’t hesitate to let us know what you would have graded them in the comments section.
The Three Stars of the Game once again were:
Foderingham – 7.5
A much more composed performance from the man between the sticks. His distribution had the sense of urgency Warburton will be looking for and he helped start up various counter-attacks due to his quick-thinking. Didn’t have much to do in terms of shot-stopping but he dealt with the little thrown at him extremely well.
Tavernier – 9 (1st Star)
Has already cemented himself as a fans’ favourite. His first thought when on the ball is to see of he can drive into space and he doesn’t waste any time in doing so. He has bundles of energy and put it to good use, flying up the wing on mazy runs for the duration of the game. Looked more in sync with the rest of his defence too and read play well to intercept through balls on numerous occasions. Scored the third near the end of the game with a calmly slotted finished across the keeper to make it two in two for the right-back.
Kiernan – 7
Handled the threat of Rory McAllister well even if he did have to take a medical time-out in the process. Commanding in the air and subtle with the ball at his feet he put in a steady shift, communicated well with Wilson too. Will grow under the guidance of Weir.
Wilson – 7
A few passes went astray early on but he too put in an improved display which shows that the understanding between the pair is improving. He strode out of defence well when in possession and was dominant in the air. Recovered well when he had got wrong side in the second half.
Wallace – 8
Put in an excellent shift which showed that he is getting back to his marauding best. Reached the bye-line on countless occasions and was the one setting the tempo late on as he overlapped Miller like a man possessed. The competition for the armband looks to have instilled him with an added sense of responsibility as he was evidently more vocal. Still has to improve on his crossing though as he struggled to pick anyone out when he hit the touchline.
Halliday – 9
A magnificent display at the heart of the midfield made it three stellar performances in a row for the man from Copland Road. Has proved to be an improvement on Murdoch as his range of passing and athleticism are far greater. Broke up play time after time while he was the anchor which initiated most attacks. Apart from a scuffle with McAllister it was a faultless performance.
Law – 6.5
Added drive to the midfield but didn’t get himself into positions which enabled him to support Waghorn. Closed down with great intensity but could be more economical with his running as he often presses himself rather in a pack. A role on the right wing may suit him more as his best work is when he is cutting inside and linking up. Unlucky not to score with a glancing header.
Shiels – 7
Replaced Holt in the starting XI after a good thirty minutes against Hibs but failed to dictate the game the way he would have liked but I put that down to the fact that Halliday has taken on the mantle of playmaker which prohibits him from dropping deep and getting on the ball. Nevertheless, he put in a decent performance with the neat touches you would expect from him but nothing of note which suggests he has a definitive role in the midfield. Is always looking to get on the ball but his needless Cruyff turns tend to disrupt play rather than inject pace into the attacks.
Templeton – 7
Came in for some rough treatment from the right back in particular but he stood up to it better than he has previously. Scuffed finish was enough to score the opener but his best moment came when he perfectly looped a ball first time out of the sky into the path of Wallace.
McKay – 6.5
Made some good runs inside in the first-half but often ran into crowded areas. Has to be smarter when in possession as at times he can slow the play down and allows the opposition to get back into shape. Is at his best when he can link up in tight spaces but this only happens when he roams in from wider areas. Inconsistent, but with an extended run of games he will undoubtedly improve.
Waghorn – 9
The sturdy striker did everything but score. Led the line expertly and played a lovely few balls round the corner. Brought others into play really well which shows he has more to his game than just simply about goals. His presence had a hand in Templeton’s opener but he could have had a hat-trick himself with the pick of the bunch being a curled effort which bounced off the post. When shifted out wide to accommodate Clark he thrived as he used his power to burst down the wing with Tavernier which will have given Warburton something to think about.
Miller – 8.5 (on 57′)
Impressed again coming off the bench to score at the back post once more. His new role on the left wing looks to suit him well and he looks very sharp compared to last year.
Holt – 8 (on 57′)
Took advantage of a tiring Peterhead side to orchestrate a number of attacks. Clever in possession and could have scored himself. May have done enough to secure a starting slot on Friday.
Clark – 7.5 (on 70′)
Great through ball to Tavernier for the third goal. Exploited the spaces left as the game opened up well. Should have been composed in front of goal though as he squandered a couple of chances.
Team Performance: 7.5/10
27 shots on target tells you all you need to know. The team were relentless when going forward and if wasn’t for some sloppy finishing and heroic goalkeeping from Smith it could easily have been double figures.