Player Ratings – A Tough Look Back

Published by James Forrest on

Our return to league action since the winter break has been nothing short of frustrating, some times with the results, but nearly all of the time when it comes to the level of performance that we would come to expect from our side. It has been pedestrian, predictable and so far away from what we would expect both in general but also given how well we know we can play. So many different variables have been brought forward as to why this has been the case. Are our players far less fit than they should be following the winter break training camp? Are we needing to change the formation we play? Have the players completely lost the required mentality? Everyone has an opinion, and my feeling is the answer lies somewhere in the middle of those theories.

An apology. I have been struggling to keep up with the player ratings game by game recently. This is down to the fact that a lot is changing for me on a personal level, mainly that I have started a new job (woo) and have been concentrating a lot on being absolutely right with that. I’ve also been very aware that our new website is coming and wanted to make sure I cleaned house before that starts on Friday. Therefore, I’ve put together all of the ratings from St Mirren to Kilmarnock below, and rather than talk about each individual performance from each game, let’s look at the best points and the worst points from what I’ve gathered.
Rangers 1-0 St Mirren

Allan McGregor – 7

Jon Flanagan – 6

Connor Goldson – 7

Nikola Katic – 7

Borna Barisic – 7

Ryan Jack – 6

Steven Davis – 6

Glen Kamara – 6

Joe Aribo – 7 – Man of the Match

Jermain Defoe – 7

Ryan Kent – 6

Scott Arfield – 6

Sheyi Ojo – 6



Hearts 2-1 Rangers

Allan McGregor – 6

Jon Flanagan – 4

Connor Goldson – 7 – Man of the Match

Nikola Katic – 6

Borna Barisic – 7

Ryan Jack – 6

Steven Davis – 5

Glen Kamara – 4

Joe Aribo – 6

Jermain Defoe – 6

Ryan Kent – 7

Scott Arfield – 6

Matt Polster – 6

Sheyi Ojo – 5



Rangers 2-0 Ross County

Allan McGregor – 7

Matt Polster – 7

Connor Goldson – 7

Nikola Katic – 6

Borna Barisic – 7

Scott Arfield – 8 – Man of the Match

Steven Davis – 6

Glen Kamara – 7

Sheyi Ojo – 6

Jermain Defoe – 8

Ryan Kent – 6

Joe Aribo – 6

Alfredo Morelos – 6

Jordan Jones – 6


Rangers 0-0 Aberdeen

Allan McGregor – 9 – Man of the Match

Matt Polster – 7

Connor Goldson – 6

Nikola Katic – 5

Borna Barisic – 6

Scott Arfield – 6

Steven Davis – 6

Glen Kamara – 5

Joe Aribo – 5

Alfredo Morelos – 6

Ryan Kent – 5

Sheyi Ojo – 4

Ianis Hagi – 6

Florian Kamberi – 6



Rangers 2-1 Hibernian

Allan McGregor – 6

James Tavernier – 8

Connor Goldson – 7

George Edmundson – 7

Borna Barisic – 7

Scott Arfield – 6

Steven Davis – 6

Joe Aribo – 6

Ianis Hagi – 8 – Man of the Match

Alfredo Morelos – 7

Ryan Kent – 6

Greg Stewart – 7

Jordan Jones – 6

Glen Kamara – 6



Hamilton 1-4 Rangers

Allan McGregor – 7

James Tavernier – 6

Connor Goldson – 6

George Edmundson – 5

Borna Barisic – 6

Scott Arfield – 8 – Man of the Match

Glen Kamara – 6

Joe Aribo – 7

Ianis Hagi – 7

Alfredo Morelos – 7

Ryan Kent – 7

Andy Halliday – 6

Steven Davis – 7

Greg Stewart – 7


Kilmarnock 2-1 Rangers

Allan McGregor – 6

James Tavernier – 6

Connor Goldson – 6

Nikola Katic – 5

Andy Halliday – 6

Scott Arfield – 7 – Man of the Match

Ryan Jack – 6

Joe Aribo – 5

Ianis Hagi – 6

Alfredo Morelos – 5

Ryan Kent – 5

Greg Stewart – 5

Florian Kamberi – 5


The Best
Scott Arfield
He seems a lot happier in the role he is now playing. Far more natural as a number 10 with the ability to run into space and be an attacking threat. He has been scoring some lovely long range goals lately too which you can only hope will continue over the coming months. I just hope that he continues to work at fitting into the system we play outwith attacking, there are still times where he looks lost when tracking back.

Matt Polster
Many people had written off the American given that Gerrard’s go to guys to replace an injured Tavernier were a youngster and Jon Flanagan. However, following Flanagan’s dismal display at Tynecastle, Polster was given a lifeline and it has to be said he took out. Reliable, did his job and far closer to Tav’s style than the aforementioned. You notice the difference when Tavernier is back of course, but Matt has definitely proved his worth as a back up option, both at right back and in midfield, as he will work tirelessly and follow orders without question.

Ianis Hagi
We were all incredibly excited about this signing, some remembering his performances at the EURO U21’s last summer, and others for his genes. But what’s clear his is offering a fresh vibrancy to the attack. His quick feet, eye for a pass and shooting ability have all been on display and paid dividends for us, and so long as he can continue to adapt to the Scottish game, he could be the playmaker this team needs.

The Worst
Ryan Kent
Been really disappointed with how limited Kent feels of late. His crossing feels off, his shooting is erratic (both examples are overall given he has had some success on both counts in fairness) and his head just looks down. He feels like he knows he won’t get the same feeling for the game that he did when he scored at Parkhead, and there really has been no tearing apart of late at all.

Nikola Katic
So bad that he was dropped for a couple of games before being brought back in only to be poor once again. The curse of the players who were on the scoresheet on December 29 feels like a thing, as Niko’s confidence seems shot. When he is good, he is REALLY good, but it goes the other way as well and you really notice his deficiencies with the ball on the deck lately.

Steven Davis
So much of the criticism about Rangers overall of late, win lose or draw, is the tempo is so much slower at the moment. A lot of that is set by Steven Davis, who time and again we talk about being key to the great performances as he sets that rhythm from the position he plays. When Davis plays poorly, Rangers play poorly, and our level of play has been acceptable in just 1/6 of the minutes of football we’ve played in the games covered. That isn’t good enough, and a better Steven Davis goes a long way to fixing that.

These, of course, are my opinions. They may not register with you at all, they may be exactly what you are thinking. Both points of view are absolutely great though, because either way you have an opinion. And that opinion should be better represented. So, from the 15th of February, the way we do ratings will change. On the new Heart and Hand website, you will be able to rate the players yourself post match, and an overall rating will be generated based on the results. Let’s just hope that this new dawn for Heart and Hand coincides with a better set of ratings for the Rangers players on the park.

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