We can keep star players: Rangers manager Steven Gerrard

Rangers eased past Aberdeen to end the Scottish Premiership season unbeaten before lifting the title for the 55th time.

Rangers players celebrate winning the Scottish Premier League. Credit: Rangers Football Club Twitter

A dominant Rangers team defeated Aberdeen 4-0 to end the Scottish Premiership season unbeaten. Now, they will face a battle to retain the players who have led the charge for the club’s 55th championship. Rangers manager Steven Gerrard is determined to keep the squad that helped them win the title in an emphatic fashion. Asked if he feared seeing his unbeaten league-winning side broken up, the Light Blues boss said: “Let me flip the question for you. If anyone wanted to take them away from me, they best bring an army with them.”

Borna Barisic, Alfredo Morelos, Glen Kamara, and Ryan Kent could be the players high in demand after playing a pivotal role in the title push. For the time being, Gerrard is focussed on the recent season and is happy to go the entire term unbeaten. “It’s a special achievement. It’s very rare to go a season unbeaten and that’s the reason why I’m so proud of the players. The consistency levels have been impressive,” he added.

Gerrard revealed that it all started with last summer and how he had a “good feeling” about the pre-season. “I got a really good feeling about pre-season on the back of last season being curtailed. The focus felt different,” he added. “We got off to a real strong start at Aberdeen. That was a real key game to make a statement and we did that. We grew from that moment. At the turn of the year, not having a winter break helped us.”

“Because of Covid, we couldn’t go anywhere. It didn’t make sense, it wasn’t right to go anywhere. We just needed a focus and that was to play games. We were lucky to be able to come to work. I think the Old Firm in January was a massive game. It was a big statement because we didn’t play well in the game. To not play well against your nearest challenger and still win, that gave the players a lot of belief. That was a big, big moment in the title race.”

Winter months

Speaking about getting through the winter period, Gerrard said the only focus for them was on the next match. “Then we got through the winter months and went to Hibernian. We were (getting changed) in the stand behind the goal, it was freezing cold and it was a big test for us,” he elaborated.

“Did we have the character? Did we have the mental desire, the mettle, the steel to come through a real tough away fixture? I remember us being asked a lot of questions externally. But we always had a focus – next game. The next game is the most important.”

“We’ve built this on steel, resolve and organisation and we’ve added some quality players recruitment-wise to give us the firepower and to take some of the responsibility off key players. Collectively we’ve done it with style, so we’ve got both sides of it spot on and the players deserve all the credit for it.”

Sportslumo Desk

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