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A Devil's Advocate's defence of Ally McCoist, and rebuttal of criticisms.

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I remember seeing Ally playing for Kilmarnock at the end of his career. He broke his leg trying to get on the end of a cross into the box somehow - I don't really remember all the details. What I do remember is Ally trying to get onto the end of the cross despite his leg hanging off. It was instinctive, deep rooted, a refusal to give up.

Today's announcement was a surprise with this in mind. I don't take Ally for a quitter, still don't.


I think Ally was doing the equivalent of 'going all in' at poker, despite not having the best hand, in the hope of facing down his critics. It is surely true that Ally still believes himself to still be the man to take Rangers back to the top flight.


But is he? Let's go through some criticisms of him;


Criticism 1- He has a vastly expensive squad, and should be doing better with them.

The squad is expensive for a reason - Good players would not be willing to drop down three divisions into a football wilderness. To even sign average

players, Rangers had to fork out multiples above true market value to attain them. Cue resentment.


Criticism 2- He hasn't brought through young players.

He could have done better, but currently 30% of the squad are from the youth set up, and do contain some potential in McLeod and Aird. This is a

better performance and ratio than celtic, who only have McGregor and Forrest from their youth set up, and Forrest has been on the scene for a few

years now.


Criticism 3- He is only in it for the money.

I just don't buy this. This has been used constantly to smear him. I'm sure Ally could pick up his £20,000 per episode buy out for Question of Sport if

he desired again. He is unquestionably the highest paid manager in Scotland, which in the current financial climate is madness. However, this is a

matter for the ranger's financial controller to decide. Ally to his credit has already offered to take a wage cut, even if temporary. To put it into

perspective, peter lawwel is reputed to be on close to 50% more at celtic.


Criticism 4- 'We won't get promoted with Ally in charge

I think the collective bottle of the support has gone rather than Ally's bottle. You are half way through December. Hearts are no great shakes and I

fully expect them to start dropping points. Once they do, they may find it difficult to push forward again. In the two games v Rangers (and against

Hibs), Hearts rode their luck. Is Craig Levein suddenly a football genius? The wheels will come off soon. Also, as proven against a few SPFL teams,

Ally can set up his teams to beat them. The play offs if needed, will be negotiated by Ally. St Mirren / Ross County?? Come on. Hibs are your worry.


Criticism 5- Players are regressing

Yes, and this is to be expected. If barca had spent two and a half years playing garbage week in week out, we'd be saying how Messi was going

backwards.. Two years of non competitive action blunts the sword. However, some evidence suggests he is improving young players like Mcleod, and

whipping boy Aird.


Criticism 6- He has been a lackey for Green, Whyte etc.

Let's be clear - rangers would have had titles unfairly stripped off them if it wasn't for Ally. Ally is one of the most important people in your history -

he was the one who kept going when the Goughs, Smiths, Fergusons of the world had written rangers off as dead. Ally kept pumping the heart until

the pulse appeared again. Yet it is derided as a selfish act for financial gain. Jesus wept. Green hates him. This is 'a good sign'.


Criticism 7- He plays hoof ball.

True, and it looks very 20th century. However Ally will see it as a percentage tactic on poor pitches. Jury out on it's effectiveness. We can't expect tiki

taka from any Scottish team let alone championship teams. And tbh, the SPFL looks absolutely garbage. John Greig's teams would be running riot

in it I suspect.


Criticism 8- He looks clueless / I hate his face etc

Personal abuse helps no one, and rangers fans are particularly vociferous I'm sure a lot of you will agree. It's like keying your own car. We all know

support will produce better results than personal abuse.


Criticism 9- His cup performances.

Could be better (ask neil Lennon /any Hibs manager /Davie Smith), but seriously, getting outraged by losing in the Petrofac cup or whatever it's called-

you should be thankful your name isn't on that embarrassment of a cup. Cup football is unforgiving, but the league is all that really matters. Plus, he

has done a couple of top flight teams IIRC.


I'd say the Rangers support has to give Ally the benefit of the doubt and allow him to get on with his very specific goal - getting Rangers back into the SPFL. He

has earned this. You may be slightly off- course at the moment, but with 4 months left, Ally should have the full support of the fans. He is the last 'Rangers man' in the building - do you really want to chase him?

Edited by neutralscot
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not really a rebuttal though is it. it's just some hopes and excuses.


hearts will drop points. will they, more likely we will on current evidence (hopes)


you cant expect tiki taki. yet every team just about has outplayed us since div 3 (excuses)


etc etc

Edited by the gunslinger
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the gunslinger


not really a rebuttal though is it. -



No you are quite right - wrong word. Surely we can agree with most of the points made though? I accept that expecting the wheels to come off hearts enough for rangers to catch them is now harder, though I expect the gap to be 6 points by end 17th jan. Long way to go. Hearts will never maintain this form. They will surely hit a 3-5 game blip (hope).


Talking of excuses, come on man. I tried not to bore everyone with the **** saga (excuses) .

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