We decided to have a wee bit of fun for the season ahead by getting some predictions from a few friends of the blog and well known Rangers fans. The response was so good that we have had to split it into two parts
So we contacted them and gave them a number of questions to answer on our season ahead;
First up was our friend and Rangers enthusiast Andy Cameron @andycameron1940
SPFL finishing place and why – A lot of people talking of stopping 10 in a row…I want to stop 8 – 1st for me no other option
Top Goal scorer – Could be one of 4 or 5 choices but I’ll choose Scotty Arfield
Player of the year – Ross McCrorie in Scotland and for Rangers
Young player of the year – Glenn Middleton, looks an exciting prospect. He’s young and fearless reminds me of Willie Henderson
Signing of the year – The manager Stevie G, what a coup that is
Season / European / Management expectations-
A new vibrant Rangers in all competitions with a fear for all teams coming to Ibrox. An addition or two to the trophy room and a statement of intent from Mr Gerrard that he’s staying for 10 in a row! A nice surprise for the season would be a Semi final place in Europe, we can do it.
Rangers are different from other clubs who have fans, we don’t have fans, we have supporters. Generations of supporters since 1872. My first match was in 1945 and last Friday at Ibrox I was joined by two daughters and 5 grandchildren and I can assure you that all their grandchildren will be part of the Rangers family! I look forward to Ibrox rocking with Rangers songs at every match. Lets Go!
We then asked Jamie Currie @jamiecurrie89
SPFL finishing place & why – First because I believe if we go into this season targeting second place, like the last two, we will end up struggling again. Time to get the finger out and win the title back.
Top Goal scorer – Alfredo Morelos. Expecting big things from him – providing he stays – he’s had a rest over the summer so hopefully he can really kick on next season.
Player of the year – Jamie Murphy. He made a good impact at the back end of last season. Think he will be one of the underrated types who goes about his job with minimal fuss but when he’s out we will miss him.
Young player of the year – Jordan Rossiter – if he stays fit, he should become an integral part of the team. He has the ability so I am hoping to see a fantastic year from Jordan. Let’s hope it’s his year for a number of reasons.
Signing of the year – Conor Goldson have a feeling he’s going to be that centre back we have been missing. Bearing in mind, I have yet to see him play, I have a gut feeling that this guy is going to be a cracker for us.
Season expectations – I would love to say win the treble, but regardless of what happens throughout the season there has to be a shiny thing brought back to Ibrox next season. No ifs or buts – we need a trophy.
European expectations – The third qualifying round is my expectation. We should be beating Shkupi and I reckon we will beat Osijek too, but just and no more.
Management expectations – I expect Gerrard to take no nonsense from his players or the refs. I think he will be one of those managers who will be tactically flexible and not be wedded to one system, but the biggest thing I expect from the management team is to bring back the winning mentality.
Season surprise – Greg Docherty – many have him down as a squad player for next season but I fancy him to take Gerrard’s fancy, get in the team on a regular basis and show everyone why we chased him in January.
In terms of the team, I am going to be a romantic and say we will surprisingly reach the Europa League group stages, don’t ask me why
Ashley Neil @ash24_x was next to tell us
League position and why: Comfortable 2nd, of course I would love to win 55 but I don’t want my heart to rule my head. The other half of the old firm still have a financial advantage
Top Goal Scorer: Scott Arfield, it would have been Morelos but I’m unsure if he will be here for the season
Player of the year: Nikola Katic, it’s early days but I think he will be brilliant for us especially with him being so young
Young player: Ross McCrorie, he was brilliant on Friday night and I think he will continue to build on last season with ease
Signing of the season: McGregor, delighted to have him back, I think the signing just speaks for itself. He dives to left, he dives to the right..
Season expectations: Home form being a lot more consistent but that should be a given and to win a trophy
European expectations: Group stages, the last qualifier will be tough but it’s just your luck and we are due some
Manager expectations: Be humble, let the team do the talking on the pitch. Commitment and playing for the jersey, I dont think that is going to be an issue this season
Season Surprise: Glenn Middleton
TV star Jordan Young @joskyn100 of Scots squad revealed his 18-19 hopes
SPFL finishing place- 1st place. Of course that’s where I want us to finish but I’m also very well aware how tough an ask that is
Top scorer- El Buffalo, I think there’s a goal machine in there. He needed a rest and a bit of confidence
Player of the year- Being at the Bury game on Friday I could list four or five that I think could be. Arfield/Murphy/McCrorie/Goldson. I’m going to say Goldson, I really liked what I saw and we’ve been crying out for a decent centre-half
Young player- Again I think there is plenty choice here, which is a great position to be in. I’m going to say Ross McCrorie, if we play him in midfield I think he could be a major player for us
Signing of the year- Scotty Arfield, he’ll get goals and looks like he’ll give us a drive and energy that has been missing
Expectations- I’m absolutely buzzing about the season. I expect/hope that we become consistent. We need to start dominating matches and being confident in our ability. I’d hope we have seen the end to shipping silly goals almost every game
Europe expectations- Europe is an extra treat at the moment. Getting to the group stages should be viewed as a great success, we need to start being successful and consistent domestically before we aim for Euro success.
Management- I think Gerrard and Mcallister will hopefully handle the huge pressure that will come with managing our club. I expect them to give our team a swagger and confidence that we are desperate for. I expect them to set very high standards for the players. I want to see players giving everything. After the old firm maulings of last season I think it’s essential we have fight and desire instilled in the squad
Season surprise- McGregor being our number one and being every bit as good as he was six years ago!
Final prediction of part one is from actor Gavin Wright @gingstertrippin
SPFL finishing place & why – 2nd, within 5-8 points by the final day. The gerrard ‘bounce’ effect will I think be huge. I keep going on about this to mates, but I met Souness very briefly last year. At the legends game at ibrox when smith walked in the dressing room, EVERYONE was suddenly aware of him being there. It’s about presence and Gerrard has it in abundance. That will carry a lot of our players forward. It will make them believe a bit more. The authority he spoke with in that training session in Spain “get it in your heads. Now.” Tells a lot about him and players will respond to that. Michael Beale and Gary Mc have excellent coaching reputations too so these are all positives. Negative is that I just don’t think we have enough in midfield, yet, to realistically say we could win the league – or up front for that matter. We need one more after Sadiq and someone proven at that. Celtic have just spent a lot of money on one striker, and some may say that was only to stand still because he was there last year, but after the money they got for Armstrong too I don’t think that will be the last of their spending. That said, Goldson is exactly the kind of centre half we should have been looking to sign for a while. Point to prove, young enough to improve and hungry to play for a manager he idolised as a boy.
Top Goal scorer – if he stays, Windass. I think we will play like Liverpool a bit, and in so doing we will likely play with one main striker and one feeding off making late runs from a bit deeper. Windass doesn’t have the vision to play a traditional ‘10’, he’s good with the game in front of him. But he has good stamina and if we can play quickly and let Morelos hold the ball and body defenders like he did in the 2-3 OF game then Windass could profit from that. If he doesn’t stay, I would think Morelos will be our top scorer.
Player of the year – Maybe this is more in hope than expectation cos I haven’t seen him play at all! But, Connor Goldson. I just feel that this guy is coming here with a point to prove. By all accounts he can’t have too many complaints about not starting so many games last year. But he will want to show he should have been playing.
Young player of the year – Ross McCorie. If played as a defensive midfielder I honestly believe this kid could play for anyone. He’s quick. He’s aggressive. He’s committed. He can run with the ball, he is intimidating and is motivated. This is his first season after a pre-season he can reasonably expect to be in the team. Big year for him. The fans want him to succeed too and will give him more slack than others which will help take pressure off him.
Signing of the year – Jon Flanagan. Maybe this should be more in the ‘surprise’ category, if I think Goldson will be POTY but I just think this one has slipped the radar a bit. I was talking to my brother in law last weekend who is a big Liverpool fan, and listened to the record rangers podcast (I know I know… 🙄) a couple weeks back when they had the guy on from the anfield rap. Basically they all say, he’s solid, dependable, intelligent and is an old fashioned full back. Defensive minded with the ability to help out midfield when team is on the attack (rather than the modern (Tav/John) full back overlapping his wide man etc). Allowing us to win 2nd ball in midfield and keep pressure on teams and (hopefully) not be as exposed to counter attack
Season expectations – Expectations are simple, don’t be bullied. Do not allow ourselves to begin bleating to the ref if a team tackles hard. Acknowledge it, let the ref know, and then make sure the guy is only brave enough to try it once. The shameful challenge from bowman in the league cup semi got in players heads. Can you imagine Kevin Thomson settling for that? If we can handle ourselves in that department (which is what lots of teams in Scotland will try to do) then we can then hopefully allow our players to win the football match. That should hopefully see us take care of most of the games. The OF games will resolve themselves anyway. If we do all that, we should hope to get to at least one final. And push them hard for the league, even if we do fall slightly short.
European expectations – If we make it to, or even just miss out on the group stages, then we will have done well. I honestly don’t have any expectations here. Just don’t go out to the Macedonians!!
Management expectations – Gerrard will be attacked at every turn because he is the big fish. I think he’ll rise above a lot of it, and then make a point when it needs to be made, and then of course be vilified for it. I just want him to get our players mentality improved. Too many are too easily harmed by difficult to swallow defeats – 2-3 v Celtic being prime example of the run we went on after. There’s no bounce back from hard defeats any more like there used to be. We need that back.
Season surprise – Rangers, season surprise will be… erm… Rossiter May start more than 10 games!
If not about Rangers, then both Hearts and Hibs to finish above Aberdeen this season.
So that’s us for part one of the predictions, tomorrow we have some more guest answers and it’s the turn of the lads here at the blog to tell you their hopes for 2018/19
Fancy joining in? Drop us a message and you could feature on tomorrow’s blog