When Alfredo Morelos and then Kemar Roofe were consigned to the treatment room a few weeks back, nobody would have predicted how our season was going to turn out.
Beating top European sides is one thing but to do it without a recognised striker is a testament to the tactics and implementation of the coaching staff and Rangers players.
Front and centre has been Joe Aribo, playing his seventh different position for the club as an auxiliary striker and the Nigerian international has explained how he has been able to adapt and who we have to thank for his transformation, as reported by The Glasgow Times:
“First of all I’m just happy to be out there, helping the boys in whatever way I can.
“It’s different compared to playing in the midfield areas, of course. But I want to add goals into my game so in that sense there is an easier chance to score.
“I’ve not really played that much up front. It’s one I’m still adapting to. But if it means I play in the next game then so be it.
“Kem just says to always move around. You see him playing and he is always on the go, always moving and always trying to anticipate where the ball is going to come.
“When I find out that I’m going to be playing up front, I speak a lot with Roy.
“He tells me some movements to do. He knows that I’m strong and can battle with defenders and back in and what-not.
“I speak to Roy a lot about it. You can’t get a better guy when you think about his career. When you look at what he did, it just shows that I’m not in bad company and can learn from him.”
You can see with the way that Aribo has been playing that he has clearly been paying attention, he doesn’t look like a midfielder playing up front but a target man who can bring others around him into the game.
It would have been easy to play Fashion Sakala and hope for the best but he is far more suited to playing in one of the wider attacking positions in our current system, Aribo’s physicality and technical ability have made him a natural fit.
One of the issues with the 25-year old is that his versatility almost goes against him, he doesn’t have a set position. He’s looked good in a deeper midfield role but has also shone cutting in from the right-hand side and as a number ten but now, he has found himself in the unlikely position of being able to make himself immortal by leading the line in a major European tournament final – I think he made the right call moving to Scotland after all…