Beat around the Bush

By Adam Boxer THE season is now a few games old and it hasn t taken Rangers very long to rediscover the frailties that haunted them throughout last season. The profligacy of QPR s strike force is epitomised by the wasteful finishing of Heidar Helguson, a

By Adam Boxer

THE season is now a few games old and it hasn't taken Rangers very long to rediscover the frailties that haunted them throughout last season.

The profligacy of QPR's strike force is epitomised by the wasteful finishing of Heidar Helguson, a man singled out by a section of supporters for a perceived lack of effort.

While he continues to lumber up front with a succession of different partners, supporters like myself are craving continuity. Jim Magilton has opted for a different strike force on each occasion, which doesn't allow much scope for continuity or form.


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Helguson's goal and performance at Plymouth had the travelling fans hoping that the Ice-man had at last turned the corner after months of toil.

His withdrawal was a little confusing given the state of the game, and Patrick Agyemang's inability to hold the ball contributed to Rangers' downfall in the south-west. Even more perplexing than that was Agyemang's deployment in the same role for the next fixture at Bristol City.

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The former Preston man seemed to be playing some feeble wide role with nobody leading the line - the lesser known 4-6-0 formation.

Ian Holloway was once criticised heavily for trying something similar at Ashton Gate back in 2004, and getting punished by the odd goal.

Despite controlling encounters for isolated spells with some breathtaking passing football, questions over finishing continue to come to the fore, with no natural goalscorer leaping out at Magilton to lead the line.

I always find it useful to look to lessons of the past to help with present problems, and Rangers hit their attacking peak in recent times under Luigi De Canio - attacking flair, goals galore and excitement unbridled.

While supporters continue to scream for this mythical 20-goal per season striker, could he already be in our midst, bereft of self-confidence and languishing on the bench?

Some may call Rowan Vine and Patrick Agyemang a partnership that clicked at the time but no more. Ask yourselves, however, has it been tried on a consistent basis since their return from respective injuries? A brief glimpse at Preston at the end of last season was all we had, and it seemed to click despite defeat at Deepdale.

Far from pinning our hopes on an inflated price-tag, should we not be looking to the proven talent in our squad as the clock starts to tick away?

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