Rangers Betting: Van Bronckhorst to get tough on players who lack hunger

Rangers Betting: Van Bronckhorst to get tough on players who lack hunger

Let’s Gio

Giovanni van Bronckhorst was chosen from a list of big-name candidates to replace Steven Gerrard as manager of Glasgow Rangers. The Dutchman returns to Ibrox, having played for the club under Dick Advocaat between 1998 and 2001 before going on to enjoy success at Arsenal and Barcelona.

With managerial experience of leading Feyenoord to a historic Eredivisie title in 2016/17 as well as two KNVB Cups, many Rangers supporters believe he’s an upgrade on their previous boss. Gerrard won just one trophy from a possible nine at Ibrox and, like his predecessor, GVB will be judged on silverware.

The future’s orange

In his first press conference since taking charge, van Bronckhorst promised to be a manager that encourages and gets the best out of his players. He wants them to enjoy the same level of success at the club as he did, and the newbie was assured by director of football Ross Wilson that there was no pressure to sell players to balance the books. With Gerrard expected to try to raid Ibrox in January, that news was welcomed by all.

Rangers were hammered 3-1 by Hibs in the semi-final of the League Cup at Hampden on Sunday, a match Gio watched from the stands. He would have been far from impressed as the defence was cut open all too easily while the attack lacked the spark needed to turn possession into goals. Addressing the media, fans and his players, he vowed that anyone in the dressing room lacking the hunger to win trophies wouldn’t play for him.

With the pain of Sunday still burning in the minds of Rangers fans, they felt encouraged by the manager’s desire to get started on his new job. Gio’s first game in charge will be against Sparta Prague on Thursday evening at Ibrox in front of a full house. The former Netherland’s international and World Cup finalist is looking forward to a special atmosphere but says the result is more important.

Rangers can secure a place in the knockout stages of the Europa League with a two or more goals win over Prague, gifting the club European football after Christmas for the third year running. That would be a welcome boost for the club’s finances, but the one every supporter holds dear is the Scottish Premiership and the goal of winning two in a row.

Champions expected to make it two in a row

Joining van Bronckhorst in Glasgow will be first team coach Roy Makaay, performance analyst Yori Bosschaart and fitness coach Arno Phillips as the club undergoes another Dutch takeover. Will Gio and his men enjoy the same kind of success Advocaat did? Supporters certainly hope so, and the current betting gives them encouragement.

Rangers to retain the Scottish Premiership is 4/7 on the Betfair Sportsbook ahead of the 6/5 trading on Celtic. The Gers currently enjoy a four-point cushion at the top. Strikers Alfredo Morelos and Kemar Roofe will benefit from the coaching of ex-Bayern Munich striker Makaay, and there’s value in the top scorer betting. Morelos is 6/1 to be top scorer, with Roofe the same price.

Gerrard was unable to guide Rangers to a Scottish Cup win or even an appearance in the final. The Gers have lifted the famous trophy 33 times in their history but haven’t kissed the silverware since 2009 when a Nacho Novo goal saw off Falkirk. After the league title, the Scottish Cup is what fans want most, ending the season on a high and celebrating into the summer.

Gio won most trophies worth winning as a player, but the 100/1 on Rangers clinching the Europa League tells its own story.