Should Steven Gerrard have started Andy Dallas, after U-23 brace?

Steven Gerrard, Manager of Rangers shakes hands with Connor Goldson of Rangers following defeat during the Betfred Scottish League Cup Semi Final between Aberdeen and Rangers at Hampden...

Rangers suffered defeat in the Scottish League Cup semi-final to Aberdeen.

28th October 2018, Hampden Park, Glasgow, Scotland; Scottish League Cup football, semi final, Aberdeen versus Rangers; Rangers Manager Steven Gerrard watches on

Steven Gerrard's decision to hand Umar Sadiq his first start for Rangers in the Scottish League Cup semi-final has been heavily criticised after the Nigerian forward struggled in the loss against Aberdeen.

The 21-year-old, on loan from AS Roma, had been ostracised until Sunday with Alfredo Morelos banned and Kyle Lafferty cup tied. Gerrard made the somewhat surprise decision to hand the forward his first start.

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Sadiq was caught offside on multiple occasions, before having the chance to tap the ball into an empty net after going round Joe Lewis - only to dive and get booked in a bid to win a penalty.

 

It is was clearly to big an occasion for a player lacking in match sharpness, and indeed the goalscoring form required to spearhead a side against a defensively-solid outfit in Derek McInnes' Aberdeen.

Instead, Gerrard should have given youngster Andy Dallas the chance to thrive as he continues to excel in Graeme Murty's reserve side - after scoring twice against Aberdeen in the SFA Youth Cup, which resulted in a 3-0 win.

Just days before, the 19-year-old scored in a 2-2 draw against Spartak Moscow, and is considered one of Rangers' best prospects. His goalscoring form has wowed the likes of Graeme Murty, which even saw him score a hat-trick in Hamburg.

28th October 2018, Hampden Park, Glasgow, Scotland; Scottish League Cup football, semi final, Aberdeen versus Rangers; Max Lowe of Aberdeen grapples with Umar Sadiq of Rangers on

The striker has been training with Rangers' first team of late, after the Gers' official Instagram page pictured Dallas alongside summer signings Ovie Ejaria and Borna Barisic.

Gerrard should have given Dallas - who has match fitness and goalscoring form - his first start for Rangers over Aberdeen, with the teenager's confidence likely to be much higher than that of Sadiq at the moment.

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