Former Rangers manager Alex McLeish believes Steven Gerrard is not convinced by Jack Simpson, following his Europa League axing.
The Lowdown: Simpson left out of squad
Simpson arrived from Bournemouth in the summer – he agreed the move earlier in the year – and will have been hoping to play a part in the Gers’ Europa League campaign.
The Latest: McLeish discusses axing
It is a tough one to take for Simpson, but speaking to Football Insider, McLeish claimed there may be something that has left Gerrard unconvinced about his new signing:
“We spoke about Jack when he came. I felt at that time he hadn’t had a lot of experience at Bournemouth.
“Then we saw him in an Old Firm game, there was some good stuff there, he showed the potential.
“But there’s obviously something that Steven’s not particularly, I’m not saying liking, but thinking that he’s not ready to go ahead of the guys who are already ahead and in position.
“You do have to make sacrifices. Some of them will have people thinking: ‘Oh well, what are we doing buying these players? We’re not putting them in the squad.’ You get that kind of feedback.
“I would say Stevie will probably want to prioritise in some other positions and make sure that they’re covered. He will know he’s well covered in the defensive side.
“It will be a disappointment to Simpson. He has to see what he can do to try and get ahead of the other guys.”
The Verdict: Tough call, but fair
Simpson will no doubt be bitterly disappointed to miss out, but in fairness, it is hard to argue with McLeish’s stance on the matter.
Rangers have a plethora of defensive options in their Europa League squad and the manager may have felt the need to focus on beefing up other areas instead of including Simpson as well.
The hope is perhaps that this may earn the defender more minutes in the league, however, allowing Gerrard to rotate as his new man adjusts to life at Ibrox.
In other news, one Rangers player is likely to miss their upcoming fixtures. Find out who it is here.
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