Rangers haven’t had the best of the seasons on their return to the Scottish Premiership. The Gers find themselves in the third position in the league standings, a whopping 33 points behind leaders and bitter most rivals Celtic.
The lack of progress saw the Gers get rid of former manager Mark Warburton and appoint Portuguese manager Pedro Caixinha earlier this month. The former Al-Gharafa boss had a good start to life in Glasgow, winning his first game in charge by an impressive scoreline of 4-0 against Hamilton Academical.
However, there is a lot of work to be done at the club if Rangers are to equip themselves better to pose any sort of challenge to Celtic in the upcoming season. One issue that the new manager faces immediately is the fact that several members of the squad are in the last few months of their contracts and could depart for free at the end of the season if a new deal is not offered to them. Two such players who find themselves in the last leg of their existing deals are defender Clint Hill and striker Kenny Miller.
One of the first decisions Caixinha will have to make ahead of the summer transfer window will be about these two players’ futures.
Rangers’ managing director Stewart Robertson was quoted by The Scottish Sun as saying that the club aren’t even looking at new deals for Clint Hill and Kenny Miller right now.
“We’re not even looking at that at the minute. It’s still very much about Pedro settling in. Once he gets to know the players he will start to look at things and assess things going forward. There is still plenty of time to go until the end of the season. We just need to let Pedro do what he is doing and things will happen from there.”
Veteran defender Hill has been enjoying a fine spell with Rangers to everyone’s surprise, after arriving on a free transfer from English side Queens Park Rangers. He has been in fine goal-scoring nick in recent weeks, having scored three times in three games for the Gers, including a late equalizer in the 1-1 draw against Celtic.
The 38-year old has established himself as a mainstay in the backline for Rangers and has been performing much better than his defensive teammates Rob Kiernan, Danny Wilson, and the rest.
On the other hand, Miller, who is in his third spell with the Gers, has managed to net 9 goals this term and has also chalked up 5 assists to his name from 37 appearances. These are not bad returns from a 37-year old attacker by any means. Moreover, he has been seen coaching the Rangers youngsters this season. This is an added advantage of having him in their ranks.
Both the veterans bring a lot more value to the squad apart from their contributions on the field. Considering their experience and leadership qualities, Caixinha could certainly use these old warhorses in the squad, as he goes about building the Rangers side in his own way. Hence, extending their contracts at the end of the season should be one of the first things that the new manager should complete.