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Could Gerrard comments on careless treatment of Rangers' McCrorie explain his patience?

Ross McCrorie of Rangers walks off after being sent off during the Scottish Cup Semi Final match between Rangers and Celtic at Hampden Park on April 15, 2018 in Glasgow, Scotland.

Rangers talent Ross McCrorie has not featured much this season.

Ross McCrorie of Rangers vies with Jack Aitchison of Celtic during The Scottish FA Youth Cup Final between Celtic and Rangers at Hampden Park on April 26, 2017 in Glasgow, Scotland.

At just 20-years-old, Rangers ace Ross McCrorie is living the dream playing for the Ibrox club.

Yet this season seems so underwhelming for the midfielder.

Steven Gerrard has selected him in only four league games for a combined 133 minutes of football.

Last season by comparison, McCrorie made 21 appearances in the league, with his game time adding up to more than 1,700 minutes.

 

So what's behind McCrorie's lack of chances?

The obvious answer is the increased competition in midfield. Rangers have signed players like Ovie Ejaria and Lassana Coulibaly on loan and Steven Gerrard wants to get a look at them while he can.

More chances could open up for McCrorie in the second half of the season.

It was also telling how Gerrard hit out at previous Rangers' regimes for playing him in defence last season.

Ross McCrorie of Rangers walks off after being sent off during the Scottish Cup Semi Final match between Rangers and Celtic at Hampden Park on April 15, 2018 in Glasgow, Scotland.

BT Sport reported in the summer that Gerrard blasted: "We had a player playing at centre-back position, that wasn’t his real position, he was thrown in at the deep end. He could have been easily destroyed in terms of career wise. We felt that decision was careless."

McCrorie was sent off in Rangers' cup semi-final against Celtic and it appeared to dent his confidence.

Gerrard appears to be trying to protect the youngster by limiting his game time. If he was not concerned about McCrorie, he would not have said it.

Again, Rangers boss Gerrard could loosen up his protectiveness of McCrorie later in the season, but now, it seems like the manager is being deliberate in taking the midfielder's bounce-back season very slowly.

Steven Gerrard, Manager of Rangers gives instructions during the UEFA Europa League Group G match between Villarreal CF and Rangers at Estadio de la Ceramica on September 20, 2018 in...

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