Borna Barisic is a defender who has divided opinion in his time at Rangers but no one fan can deny he’s been one of the clubs most consistent performers recently. You know what you’re getting with Borna Barisic, a player who likes to stay wide and whip crosses into the box who won’t ever drive into the middle of the pitch. That can be seen as a positive and a negative because the opposition know what to expect but that still doesn’t stop him wracking up assists and creating for the forwards.
That old cliche comes into play with him in that he has ‘a wand of a left foot’, currently in the SPFL he has nine assists in 28 appearances which is incredible for a full back. He has also created twelve big chances in those appearances and currently averages 2.4 key passes per game, numbers a creative midfielder would be happy with never mind your left back.
His biggest criticism has always been the defensive side of the game and specifically against Celtic. Defensively he had been solid this year;
- 1 Interception per game
- 1.9 Tackles per game
- 0.2 times dribbled past per game
- 64% Ground Duels Won
- 53% Aerial Duels Won
These numbers definitely reflect the performance on the pitch as he has been much more solid defensively, especially since Beale came in. He also had his best performance at Parkhead last week and for the first time in three or four games there didn’t come in for criticism on his defensive display.
Barisic is the type of player, now, that is giving the manager a 7/10 almost every game, similar to what Papac provided in his spell at Ibrox. He is much more technically gifted though and has been a key part of the teams improvement from open play and set pieces.
That being said, he is coming in to the last year of his deal and Rangers spent big money on a young left back last summer. So what does this mean for him? Will he be sold in the summer and completely replaced by Ridvan? Will he be given a new deal and they’ll both split the minutes? A tough decision for Michael Beale to make, especially with how Barisic has been performing recently, what would you do?