Alfredo Morelos has been ruled out of the Rangers squad for Wednesday’s Champions League play-off second leg against PSV Eindhoven.
Rangers boss Giovanni van Bronckhorst made the decision based on a range of concerns, including the striker’s fitness level and attitude during the early stages of this season.
sky sports news Van Bronckhorst understands that he consulted various senior players within the team and they all unanimously supported the decision.
Morelos was sent off 13 minutes after coming off the bench at Easter Road on Saturday, but that incident wasn’t the only reason for the move.
It is understood that the 26-year-old still has a future at Ibrox if he can prove his commitment to the club.
After Morelos was off the sidelines for so long, the Rangers have bolstered their forward area this summer with the addition of Tom Lawrence, Malik Tillman, Ravi Matondo and Antonio Korac.
Korac has started all seven games in all competitions this season and has scored four goals in his last five appearances.
The Colombian striker responded to the news by posting an image on Instagram with the caption, “The best warriors are not those who always come out victorious, but those who fearlessly return to battle.”
Rangers drew the first leg against the Eredivisie 2-2 at Ibrox.
Gio: Time will tell the future of Morelos
When asked if Morelos could return to the team for future games, Van Bronckhorst said:
“The biggest factor in that is Alfredo himself, and we’ll have to see how the next few days and weeks unfold.
“The process is that we’re playing a lot of important games at the moment.
“I think it’s always been the case for me to bring in players who I think are ready to play. For me, it was a moment where I didn’t include[Alfredo]Morelos.”
“It was a difficult decision for me personally, but it was an easy decision as a manager because I am here to represent the club in the Champions League.” [Wednesday] night.
“I think he has to show me that he wants to play for Rangers. We need the level and I don’t think he’s ready to play at the moment.”
“Like we said before, we’ll be handling this internally, speaking with Morelos, and seeing what happens over the next few weeks.
“But of course it’s a signal that he’s not here. It’s a signal that I had to give, not only to Morelos, but also to my team.”
Boyd: No player is greater than the club
speaking on sky sports newsformer Rangers striker, sky sports Expert Chris Boyd says:
“Rangers have decided to act and I think they are demonstrating the leadership of Giovanni van Bronckhorst.
“There are no players as big as Rangers Football Club, and Giovanni acted because he was nowhere near the fitness level Alfredo had when he first took charge.
“If I was a player and I was kicked out as a bad player in the locker room, it would really hurt.
“He’s been injured for a long time, but he’s been back for a while and there’s no reason he’s in the state he is in now.
“He needs to give in and get in shape, and I’m sure he can force his way back into Giovanni’s thinking.
“This shouldn’t be the case for you to restart your career. It’s becoming a problem and I think the Rangers deserve a lot of credit for addressing it.”
“Waiting to be fit for a game is a thing of the past. Antonio Corac has come on and showed he is a mainstay for Rangers at the moment. Isn’t it?
“You always have to have a good locker room. If you have a player who is in the way, you don’t want to be in it. The players have spoken, they have decided that it is enough and the manager has a say.”
Van Nistelrooy: Giovanni doing his best for Rangers
Speaking ahead of the Champions League play-off second leg, PSV Eindhoven boss Ruud van Nistelrooy said:
“We know what kind of player Alfred can be and what he’s done for Rangers.
“He’s a very good striker, so in that sense we’re obviously focused on ourselves, but I appreciate him as a player.
“Obviously I don’t know why or how things turned out, but I do know about Gio. He wants to go somewhere with the team and club he’s a part of, and it’s in the club’s best interest. I know you make decisions for
“Morelos didn’t start [last week]Also in our pre-match match we saw Morelos out and not start. In that sense, I don’t think it has the greatest impact.
“Our number one striker is (Antonio) Corac and we’re counting on him for tomorrow night’s game.
“I don’t know about the decision-making regarding the Morelos incident, but I do know that Giovanni makes decisions in the best interests of the club and the team. It’s the way it is.”
Dropping Morelos Shows True Leadership
Sahil Jaidka from Sky Sports:
There is no doubt that Giovanni van Bronckhorst wanted to avoid being in this position on the eve of the big game against Rangers.
But demoting a player who scored 114 goals and provided 51 assists during his time at the club shows true leadership.
a concern was raised sky sports Before the draw at Hibernian, expert Chris Boyd commented on the Colombian’s attitude and fitness level, and it’s clear these issues have cost Morelos his place within the squad.
Red card at Easter Road was stigmatized as ‘stupid’ by James Tavernier who, along with other senior players and captain, backed Van Bronckhorst’s call – needed inside the locker room It is clear that there is a bond that transcends standards.
Speculation abounds about Morelos all the time during the transfer window, but if he can prove he puts the team first, it’s clear he still has a future at Ibrox.
Antonio Korac has shown he knows his way to goal, as have Tom Lawrence and Malik Tillman, who arrived in the summer. Rangers has depth, no doubt about it. Morelos could play an important role.
For now, the manager has the ball firmly in Morelos’ court and the message is clear. Only time will tell if the fitness and attitude issues will be addressed by the players.