Rangers: Fashion Sakala praised in Ross County win
Rangers forward Fashion Sakala was praised for being a constant threat in the 2-1 win against Ross County at Ibrox on Saturday.
The Lowdown: Rangers win
Rangers claimed a hard-fought three points against Ross County to move six points behind their Old Firm rivals at the top of the SPFL.
It was a sign of things to come for Michael Beale regarding how frustrating the afternoon would turn out, with John Lundstram forcibly withdrawn after only 11 minutes – though it was his replacement, Malik Tillman, who got Rangers on their way.
Tillman’s header opened the scoring in injury time at the end of the first half with new man Todd Cantwell getting the assist. Jordan White then levelled up for the visitors before Borna Barisic’s deflected free-kick 15 minutes from time secured the three points.
The Latest: Player Ratings
The Gers’ inability to make easy work of it was shown in the player ratings at full-time, with Alan Galindo’s verdicts for GlasgowLive seeing goalkeeper Jon McLaughlin awarded a 5/10 rating – the lowest of the starters bar Lundstram – but it was the performance of 7/10 Sakala that caught the eye – particularly when you look into his stats.
Galindo said: “Key man under the Beale era. Once again showed his threat to the visitors with pace to burn. A constant threat.”
The Verdict: Hit and miss
Featuring in every league game so far under Beale, Sakala was once again deployed from the off for the 11th time this season, but failed to add to his 10 goal involvements so far.
On a fruitless afternoon on the right-hand side, he was booked just four minutes before he was replaced by Glen Kamara in the 62nd minute with Rangers still 1-0 ahead at that point.
Despite Galindo praising his impact, the 25-year-old had the fewest amount of touches by outfield starters for the Gers bar the injured Lundstram, with just 39 – six more than ‘keeper McLaughlin (via Sofascore).
His ineffectiveness proved even deeper with a pass accuracy of just 71%, only higher than full-backs Borna Barisic and James Tavernier who attempted 30 more crosses and long balls between them, perhaps owing to their low percentages.
It summed up a disappointing afternoon for the Zambian, who may find his place soon under pressure from Ianis Hagi, who returned to the bench for only the second time following over a year out with injury.
But considering Galindo’s ratings, perhaps there was more to Sakala’s display than met the eye.