Jason Cummings, Michael O’Halloran to lead the line: Strongest attacking Rangers Lineup post transfer window
The arrival of former Hibernian striker Jason Cummings from Nottingham Forest until the end of the season is another boost for Rangers boss Graeme Murty as he looks to close the gap on rivals Celtic at the top.
With Carlos Pena now gone, the future of Eduardo Herrera being uncertain, Niko Kranjcar playing deeper in the recent friendlies, the return of Michael O’Halloran and Joe Dodoo and the signings of Jamie Murphy and now Jason Cummings, it is all change in the forward areas at Ibrox.
Most of the talent, in terms of numbers at least, is in wider and deeper areas than where Cummings plays and so I would imagine Graeme Murty will resist the temptation to play 4-4-2 most of the time in favour of a 4-2-3-1 formation.
Kenny Miller is injured and Morelos may well have to earn his place now that Cummings is here, so these four may well be the ones Murty might call on first.
Rangers Lineup with Cummings in the mix
RW – Daniel Candeias
The Portuguese winger has done well for the most parts of this season and may still be very much in Murty’s plans.
O’Halloran can play in this role if needed, as well as Joe Dodoo, so there’ll be plenty of backups. However, a change in the formation can also bring in the likes of Ryan Hardie.
CAM – Michael O’Halloran
Used as a wide man in the past, O’Halloran has played on both wings but did very well down the middle for St. Johnstone this season while out on loan, scoring 5 goals in 16 league games, which is something he can improve with better players around him.
He played down the middle at the start of the season, scoring all of his goals then (5 in 5 games) before suffering a knee injury. Since that point, he has mostly been played out wide and I think Murty recognises that he can provide something in support of the central striker. Kenny Miller is capable in this role too and might be the backup.
LW – Jamie Murphy
The 28-year-old Scot may well usurp Josh Windass in time, given that he has proven his quality at a higher level than this.
While at Brighton in the English Championship last season, Murphy scored twice and assisted 3 times in 20 starts. Windass is four years his junior and will continue to improve, but Murphy may bring a more “here and now” sort of quality.
ST – Jason Cummings
Hasn’t had the best of times in his short span in England, however, the former Hearts junior has scored 18 in 33, 18 in 33 again and 19 in 32 in his last three seasons in Scottish league football, all the while improving as he and his club (Hibs) went up the ranks.
Domestically at least, Cummings is a more reliable stick than Alfredo Morelos, who is bound to be his most obvious challenger. We must remember that Cummings is still just 22 and will get better yet.