The Lowdown: Van Bronckhorst’s comments
On Wednesday, the Scottish giants made their return to the Champions League after a 12-year absence.
After the defeat, Van Bronckhorst made a number of financial claims surrounding his Gers squad, saying: “To compete in Champions League you need hundreds of millions.
“If you look at all the squads you are facing now – Ajax and Liverpool. For us to compete with them it’s too much to ask. We want to compete but we want to compete with the squad we have and are able and capable in making. We knew it was going to be tough and that showed today.”
The Latest: Whelan’s claim
Noel Whelan, who used to work as a pundit for BBC Radio Leeds, believes that the Dutchman was having a go at the board for not giving him the budget that he feels is needed to compete at the highest level.
Speaking with Football Insider, the ex-Aberdeen striker claimed: “It might be a bit of a dig at the board. But looking across the field – they’d need a whole new team to be able to compete against Ajax.
“Man for man, you’d choose the Ajax players over the Rangers players. That’s just where they’re at. Ajax have always been a top team with a fantastic record of bringing young players through.
“Van Bronckhorst has put his hands up and admitted Rangers were up against a better side – and they will be often in the Champions League. They’ll rarely be favourites in this competition – whether that’s at home, or away.”
The Verdict: Lack of investment
Whilst Rangers were able to bring in six new additions this summer, the club failed to replace a number of high-profile exits included within their eight departures.
In July, it was announced the Light Blues had sold defender Calvin Bassey for a club-record £23m fee (ironically to Ajax). His replacement was Ben Davies, who joined from Liverpool in a deal worth just £4m.
The 27-year-old has failed to establish himself as a starter in Van Bronckhorst’s XI so far, having played just 112 minutes of football for the Gers to date.
Will Ben Davies be a good signing for Rangers?
Elsewhere, the likes of Joe Aribo were allowed to leave Ibrox without a like-for-like replacement having been secured.
Therefore, the Gers manager may be justified in his comments seemingly made towards the club’s hierarchy, as it seems that he was somewhat hung out to dry after the summer transfer window.
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