Worst XIs returns for another edition and this time we look to the blue half of the Old Firm. Rangers have had some horrendous players, especially in the last decade…
Lionel Letizi – 8 appearances
The single most error prone goalkeeper in history while at Ibrox, Letizi was in the preliminary squad for the 1998 French World Cup side (but obviously missed out). A four time international, Letizi was so hopeless that he barely lasted 7 months in Glasgow. He was Paul Le Guen’s preferred starter in goal over a certain Alan McGregor and proceeded to drop at least one clanger in every game. Thankfully for Rangers fans he was injured for months not long after his debut but he returned almost immediately to replace McGregor (who was playing well) and hand Inverness Caledonian Thistle three points at Ibrox. Le Guen was gone before the end of January and Letizi’s contract was cancelled not too long after.
Kevin Muscat – 30 appearances
Old Firm derbies are notorious for their temperamental nature so it says a lot about a player when he is deemed too risky to play in one. That’s exactly what Kevin Muscat was. More thug than footballer, Muscat never really offered much more than “passion” and “dedication”. He was part of the treble winning side of 2002/03 but didn’t even get a second season because he was too much of a liability with few Rangers fans shedding a tear. He was also recently named football’s dirtiest ever player.
Jose-Karl Pierre-Fanfan – 10 appearances, 3 goals
Apparently wanted by both sides of the Old Firm, Rangers fans were delighted that JKFP (as he will be referred to from here on) declined the advances of their old rivals. They weren’t delighted for long though. He scored on his debut but soon after began to stumble all over the place showing no ability to win headers or defend in any way, shape or form. Needless to say, it had become apparent why PSG had sold him on and by the end of September he was out of the side with no hope of getting back in. To sum up how bad he was, even Paul Le Guen didn’t fancy him and released him after only a season.
Gary Bollan – 15 appearances
Signed at a young age, Bollan suffered from both injuries and being at Ibrox during one of the highest points in the club’s history. Bollan spent more time on the treatment table and never really impressed when he got the rare chance to play. He was gone by 1998 with Rangers having lost patience with him and despite resurrecting his career somewhat elsewhere, the deeply unimpressive spell at Ibrox is not fondly remembered by the fans.
Olivier Bernard – 15 appearances
Bernard made his name at Newcastle under Bobby Robson in the early 2000s and much was expected of him when he arrived at Ibrox. Needless to say, he disappointed massively. Showing nothing going forward or defensively, he played just nine times in the SPL and did not look anything like the defender who had made his name at Newcastle. Like most of this team, Bernard only lasted a season and was sent packing to the delight of every single Rangers fan.
Emerson – 18 appearances, 1 goal
One of many ill fated foreign signings by Alex McLeish in 2003, Emerson was expected to shine after he cost the Ibrox side a cool £4 million when he was 31. He was so poor that by February of his only season at the club, he was dropped. He showed no fight nor passion and lacked any kind of quality to justify anybody spending £4 on him never mind £4 million. Even more odd was the fact that McLeish actually fought off rumours that he was signed by David Murray and forced onto him by saying that he actually chose Emerson. Not something you really want to admit.
Amdy Faye – 6 appearances
Many Rangers fans may have never realised that Amdy Faye actually played for the club on loan during the 2007/08 season and that is probably a good thing. Faye was apparently a Premier League quality but never really impressed for anybody before Walter Smith decided to bring him in from Charlton. Faye then showed why Charlton were keen to get rid of him by literally being the most anonymous Rangers player since Gary Bollan. He was with Rangers for the entire season but only because FIFA blocked a move to Blackburn in January. Needless to say that Amdy Faye is not fondly remembered at Ibrox. Mainly because he’s not remembered at all.
Dragan Mladenovic – 9 appearances
Another McLeish signing, Mladenovic cost Rangers a cool £1 million in 2004 and was expected to be the quality midfielder that Emerson wasn’t. Sadly for McLeish and Rangers fans he was even worse. While Emerson did actually get a goal for the club and lasted a whole year, Mladenovic barely lasted 6 months and offered less than nothing. Incapable of the most basic of midfield tasks, Mladenovic was sent packing after just 6 months before being released after only one horrendous season to return to Serbia never to be heard from again.
Francis Jeffers – 13 appearances
He may have only made the bench of England’s Worst XI but Jeffers doesn’t escape here. With his career stalling after failed moves to Arsenal and Charlton, Jeffers was offered an escape route by McLeish (there’s a pattern here) in 2005. Sadly Jeffers showed why his previous moves had failed with a distinct lack of goals or performances that would make you think England international. His outstanding record of zero goals in 13 games was enough to get him sent back to Charlton after just 6 months with every Rangers fan rejoicing at that news.
Egil Ostenstad – 17 appearances, 2 goals
Guess who signed him? Alex McLeish. Yeah, another McLeish signing during that horrible 2003 summer window, Ostenstad is generally regarded by most Rangers fans to be the worst player to pull on the blue shirt. He was so incredibly bad at anything related to being a footballer. He couldn’t win a header, score a goal, play a pass or even do anything useful. While he did score two goals for the club, they were in the League Cup and one was against Forfar so it’s not much of an achievement. Amazingly, he almost lasted a full season before McLeish realised his error and released him.
Francisco Sandaza – 19 appearances, 2 goals
Perhaps the worst of worst, Sandaza is probably not welcome back at Ibrox anytime soon. While all the other players played for the club when they were in the SPL so have some kind of reason, Sandaza was not only an experienced SPL player but he had also dropped down to the Third Division to join Rangers. He then proceeded to score just two goals in 19 games while looking totally disinterested and useless throughout. His motivations soon became clear though when a hoaxer got in touch with him claiming to be an agent and Sandaza admitted that he had moved to Ibrox for money. He was sacked soon after and will not be fondly remembered by any Rangers fan so naturally he’s the skipper.
Paul Le Guen
Brought in by David Murray in 2006, Le Guen will go down in history as Rangers’ shortest serving manager and the only one not complete a full season in charge of the club. His domestic record was appalling with his opening 10 games being the worst start since John Greig’s in the late 70s and seeing his side knocked out of the League Cup at home by First Division St. Johnstone (the first time that had happened). He did guide Rangers through their UEFA Cup group undefeated but by January, he had fallen out with captain Barry Ferguson and was let go not long after. Hated by Rangers fans, loved by Celtic fans he was the only choice to lead this team.
That completes the Rangers Worst XI. As always, let us know if you agree or disagree with these choices either here or on social media (links on the left) and stay tuned for more content on The Long Ball.