Reports surfaced earlier on this week linking Rangers to New England Revolution RB Brandon Bye, a player who last summer was linked with moves to Lille and Fulham. The legitimacy of these links is unclear currently but it’s a position Rangers need to look at with Tavernier turning thirty-two next season and still playing almost every minute.
So who is Brandon Bye? What type of player is he and what can he bring Rangers? Let’s take a look;
Name – Brandon Bye
Age – 27
Nationality – American
Position – Right-Back
Club – New England Revolution
The current MLS season is still in it’s infancy but with four games played so far he already has one goal and one assist, Tavernier types of numbers! He is a marauding full back who plays similarly to Tavernier but isn’t quite as polished technically. Listed at 6’0 he is an incredible athlete, capable of patrolling the touchline for the whole ninety minutes while still looking like he has some energy left in the tank.
An excellent one on one defender this season so far he has won 67.1% of his 17.67 average duels Per90. Couple that with winning 71.4% of his 4.88 average aerial duels Per90 he has been a defensive colossus so far this term. Those numbers are from a very small sample size though so it’s worth looking at his numbers from the last MLS season;
Some solid numbers especially considering New England ended up finishing 10th in their conference. The passing numbers and percentages are slightly lower than Tavernier’s further highlighting that he’s not technically as gifted as the Rangers captain. That is the only real criticism for him in that position, he wouldn’t quite provide the same as what Rangers fans have been used to for years.
That doesn’t mean he wouldn’t be a quality addition to the side, he provides seemingly endless energy on the wing and has a real hunger for defending. Thriving in one on one situations which is an area Tavernier has struggled at times over the years, what Bye lacks in technical ability he makes up for in athleticism and tenacity on the defensive end.
He is also superb in the air, winning almost 60% of his average 5.03 aerial duels Per90, another testament to his athleticism.
If he was to arrive at Ibrox, either as a rotation or replacement for Tavernier then it may take fans some time to get used to the different play style he would provide. He’s more likely to stay wide to try and hit the by line compared to Tavernier’s preference of a deeper cross or driving inside. He would provide something different and it would be interesting to see how the balance would change with someone else at right-back.
A strong, powerful and defensively solid full back, Brandon Bye could be an important addition to this Rangers side, all depending on the price tag. Do you think he’s someone Rangers should monitor further? Should any money be spent on another right-back considering Adam Devine is waiting on his chance? Time will tell but this summer transfer window is shaping up to be one of the most interesting in recent decades.