Rangers: Alison McConnell has concerns over Alfredo Morelos’ fitness

Image for Rangers: Alison McConnell has concerns over Alfredo Morelos’ fitness

Journalist Alison McConnell has given her views on Rangers forward Alfredo Morelos at the start of the new season.

Steven Gerrard’s men suffered their first defeat in 41 league games over the weekend as they fell to Dundee United at Tannadice, with Morelos not putting in the greatest of performances during the affair, only managing a score of 6.1 on WhoScored before being replaced by Jermain Defoe in the 82nd minute.

The Colombian has only recently returned to Ibrox following a summer away with his national team in the Copa America where he only managed to see nine minutes of playing time throughout the tournament.

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His return was held up by ‘red tape’ when it came to his journey back from Brazil, with the game at the weekend being his first minutes of the campaign, and speaking about the 25-year-old on The PLZ Football Show, McConnell spoke about his fitness during the game against Dundee United, and felt that Rangers could have handled his return to playing a lot better:

“As for Morelos, I thought he looked off the pace at the weekend. I didn’t think he looked particularly fit, certainly not match-fit, or not match-sharp.

“I think he looked a shadow of what we’ve seen in previous campaigns. Again, I think it might just take him a wee bit of time to get up to speed. But it was curious as to why he was away for so long and not back within the squad given the magnitude of Champions League qualifiers.”

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It certainly will be interesting to see how the club manages his fitness over the coming games, because with 17 goals and 13 assists for them in all competitions last season, he’s clearly going to be very important for them this campaign both in Scotland and abroad.

And with Rangers having got off to a rather shaky start to the season, they need to make sure that he is fit and firing as soon as possible in order to get them back on track, ideally starting with their game against Malmo tonight, because a successful Champions League campaign will really be a mark of progress after the work that the club did last season.

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Freelance sports journalist & broadcaster.