Steven Gerrard was appointed as the new Rangers coach a week back on a four-year deal. Although his work begins on the 1st of June, whispers and murmurs are stirring around at the Ibrox stadium.
The 37-year-old has simply been rewarded with the thinking cap to end the sheer dominance of arch rivals Celtic, who now have seven straight titles in their loaded cabinet. Although his reign begins at the start of the next season, the onus is on him to revitalise the squad, as most of the big guns in their ranks misfired this campaign.
One cannot quite predict if the Liverpool legend will be the right man for the job, as lack of experience and the largeness of the task might get the better of him. On the other hand, his ability to work with the right talent and therefore nurture them can bring about a telling effect. As explained by the mastermind in Pep Guardiola, it is a ‘courageous’ job that he has taken up.
But there are a few aspects of his style of management that one is sure to witness. One thing that can be concluded is he will play along the lines and standards of Jürgen Klopp and Neil Critchley. In short, the typical ‘heavy metal’ football.
After viewing the structure and performance of the U-18s, one can infer that Gerrard had a fantastic crop of fresh talent to work with. He plotted a three-man defence, with wider and taller fullbacks. The same can be expected with the Gers, as a four-man defence has looked too opened up at times this year. Next, Steven Gerrard is expected to play out a high pressing midfield system, with almost three midfielders wrapped around the opponent in possession. Without a doubt, one can predict a Steven Gerrard-led side to be full of energy and steam.
Next, the former midfielder is expected to focus on the upliftment of the youth, as quite a few prospects in the lower levels of the club are waiting to break into the senior team. Another thing expected from Gerrard is the use of an anchor in midfield, much like how Guardiola used Fernandinho at Manchester City and Thiago Alacantra at Bayern Munich.
For sure, he will focus on new signings as the management’s eyes are on a squad revamp. He will blend a squad with the right mix of youth and experience. The fact that he is aiming to land former teammate Martin Skrtel along with the academy players from Liverpool proves that.
While it is hard to predict whether he will inject success right away and knock at Celtic’s pride, one can be assured of abundant fresh ideas.