This was the worst Glasgow Rangers defensive performance since Steven Gerrard joined the club last summer, as they finally lost the tie 4-3 having held the lead on three different occasions.
Spartak scored two quick goals in a matter of minutes to win the game and severely damage Rangers chances of making the competitions last 32.
In a hugely frustrating night for the travelling fans in the Otkritie Arena, Moscow, where Rangers should have won against a very average Russian side, but it wasn’t to be because of several school boy mistakes in defence.
When is Gerrard going to work out that Jon Flanagan is totally ill at ease at left back, due to him being so right-footed? Teams are starting to notice his failures. You either play him at right back or not at all.
James Tavernier is never captain material, and is often found wanting when it comes to his defensive duties. If this weakness isn’t addressed soon, the Light Blues will continue to leak goals all season.
Gerrard may have to buy better players because they couldn’t even do the basics right in Russia, or the boss should have brought on Ryan Jack and Ross McCrorie at half-time.
It was becoming painfully obvious to me that Rangers were losing the control of the midfield battle, as it was getting more difficult to watch as the game progressed.
Does Gerrard shuffle the pack with his 25 man playing squad, to see if others on the bench can do better. Or does he stick with what he thinks are his best options?
Gerrard at times is a breath of fresh air and he does try extremely hard for the club, but he does have his weaknesses. The fans are prepared to give him time and are delighted that he chose to come to Glasgow to work.
He tends to wear his heart on his sleeve and says exactly what he thinks after the games, and the fans appreciate it.
I am sure that Connor Goldson is big enough to put up with his manager’s. criticism of him after his worst display in a Rangers jersey since his arrival.
But in fairness to Gerrard, he only tends to dish it out the dirt when it is fully deserved. – and in Russia, it certainly was.
It was an amateurish, ridiculous goal to give away on one of the most important night’s of them all, and it set the tone for more comical, but not funny defending.
Goldson and his fellow defenders did cost Rangers a lucrative three points and have made life extremely more difficult for their qualification into the last 32.