KRIS COMMONS: Manchester United spent £37million on Amad Diallo but that’s no guarantee of success and he’s not fitting in at Rangers… and time is running out for injury-hit Aaron Ramsey to make an impact at Ibrox
- Rangers dropped crucial points in the Scottish title race at Dundee United
- The team could not match its feats in humbling Borussia Dortmund in midweek
- Giovanni van Bronkhorst could have done with help from his January signings
- But Aaron Ramsey was not fit to play any part in the game at Tannadice
- Amad Diallo missed a great chance to score – and he does not look a good fit
Aaron Ramsey was unable to help Rangers at all against Dundee United due to injury, as another chance to make an impact slips by
From moments of total euphoria, football often has a habit of bringing you back down to earth with a bump. I know from personal experience.
When I was part of the Celtic team who beat Barcelona in the Champions League in 2012, we went and drew 1-1 at home to St Johnstone four days later.
These are the results which give you a bit of a reality check — like Rangers found after dropping more points in the title race yesterday.
If it was dreamland in Deutschland last Thursday, it swiftly turned to despair in Dundee as they were held to a draw at Tannadice.
Listen, no one can take anything away from Rangers for what they did against Borussia Dortmund. They were outstanding and fully deserved to win the match. It was the best result for any Scottish club in Europe since Lionel Messi, Xavi, Iniesta and Co were humbled at Celtic Park.
But, domestically, I suspect their fans are now becoming concerned. Rangers are spilling points at an alarming rate.
They went into the winter break top of the table and with a six-point lead over Celtic. Now they trail Ange Postecoglou’s side by three points.
That’s a nine-point swing in the space of barely six weeks. Celtic have just gone through the gears, while Rangers have stumbled too often. It looked like they would maybe get away with it yesterday, only for Celtic to score a dramatic late winner against Dundee. This already feels like it has all the hallmarks of another post-winter collapse, as we saw during Steven Gerrard’s first two seasons in charge.
What happened against Dortmund was great and I wish them all the best for the second leg. It would be brilliant for Scottish football if they can knock out a genuine European heavyweight.
But their chances of retaining the league title are beginning to go down the drain. It must be a concern for Giovanni van Bronckhorst.
Particularly in the second half, Rangers battered United. On another day, they could easily have scored three or four.
But the reality is they didn’t. We’re at the business end of the season — ifs, buts and maybes don’t get you anywhere.
Amad Diallo missed a great chance to score but he fluffed his lines and Gers dropped points
Given the manner of the performance in Dortmund, and the form of Ryan Jack, Joe Aribo and John Lundstram, I felt Aaron Ramsey might not get into Rangers’ strongest team. Glen Kamara seems to have lost his way slightly which might have opened up a door for Ramsey, but he wasn’t in the squad at all due to injury.
Time is running out for him to make any sort of appreciable impact at Ibrox. He was signed to make the difference in the title race, to help Rangers unlock stuffy defences with his passing and vision.
This was exactly the kind of game where they’d have hoped he could help, but he wasn’t fit enough to play any part.
As for Amad Diallo, he already looks like he’s in the wrong movie. Just because Manchester United spent £37million on him, that’s no guarantee of success.
He had a great chance late in the game and hit the post. He could have squared the ball to Fashion Sakala who would have had a tap-in. That can be the difference in tight, stuffy games.
Van Bronckhorst knows Rangers can’t afford many more days like this in the title race.
£37m winger Diallo’s January loan move from Manchester United has fallen flat so far