Gerrard facing Morelos dilemma with new recruits knocking on gaffer’s door for starting role
Steven Gerrard has a decision to make with regards to the future of Alfredo Morelos in both the short and long term at Rangers.
On an almost weekly basis he claims that the Colombian international remains focussed on his performances for the club and is happy to be a Gers player – Morelos himself has also been open about this – there is, however, a need to be proactive, rather than reactive with regards to team selection.
Cedric Itten and Kemar Roofe might not be fully up to speed yet in terms of fitness – the Swiss international shouldn’t have any excuses though having just finished a domestic campaign with St Gallen – but with a free mid-week for the first time in ages, they should both come into Gerrard’s thoughts for a starting place against Kilmarnock at Ibrox on Saturday.
Morelos’s contribution should never be ignored for Rangers and over analysing his performance against a team of Bayer Leverkusen’s ability also wouldn’t be productive, but there needs to be a more in depth look at his contribution over the first four games of the season rather than just the fact he has one goal involvement per match on a basic statistical level.
Against Livingston, in particular, his touch looked heavy and there were no signs of the trademark “touch and roll” technique that he uses so well against a packed defence or when being tightly marked, even the game against St Mirren – when he was man of the match – didn’t pain a full picture.
Other than his two goals, he had opportunities to score that would have found the back of the net last season, the half yard of pace needed to get away from defenders or the clarity of thought required to get a shot away before the defence can react just isn’t there at the present moment.
Morelos isn’t playing badly, far from it, but he isn’t anywhere near his usually high level and with new signings keen to impress, Gerrard has to decide for how much longer he remains the first name on the team sheet.