The one summer signing that didn’t seem to drag on for weeks was Abdallah Sima. With the rest of the signings there had been rumours and chatter days before the players signed. However, Sima seemed to come out of nowhere. The Senegalese forward signed on-loan from Brighton for the season.
He spent the previous with Angers in Ligue 1 where he scored 5 and got 1 assist in 34 appearances. He, unfortunately couldn’t stop them from being relegated to Ligue 2. Rangers had previous with Sima though. He was part of the Slavia Prague side that knocked the club out of the Europa League in 2021.
He impressed in that campaign both against Rangers and Leicester. This is what prompted Brighton to pull the trigger and sign him as a 20-year-old. However, he hasn’t quite made the jump to their first team yet.
He’ll be hoping this loan move and European experience will either get him a permanent move to Ibrox or get him in the Brighton first team fold.
Unfortunately, there are many sources that give stats for any of the cups in Scotland. One thing that is certain though, Abdallah Sima scored a screamer for the first goal and is being credited, by some outlets, for the third!
The Eye Test
What Abdallah Sima offers is an abundance of pace and power. He showcased that perfectly for the first goal last night. It was a decent ball into space from Ridvan, Sima then uses his pace to close down the Livingston defender. They go down (too easily?) and he bursts into the box before curling a lovely right footed shot into the corner.
The finish came from a not too dissimilar area as his goal against PSV. That bending finish into the far corner is clearly something he has in his locker. With Matondo out, the 22-year-olds pace gives us something no other player in the team does, a threat in behind.
Rangers actually used this to their advantage last night and it led to the first and third goals. The third goal took two passes and three touches (four if you count the deflection) to end up in the back of the net. Butland played it to Barisic who let the ball run across him before whipping a beautiful pass down the line to send Sima away. The big man didn’t take a touch before trying to square it across to Dessers with his left foot. Chasing back was de Lucas who could only turn it into the net
He had a good near post effort from the left which Shamal George saved, then he fired in a dangerous left footed cross which no one could get on the end of. For Ridvan’s wonderful solo goal he actually knocks the ball down with his chest perfectly for Ryan Jack, who gave it to the Turkish left back and he done the rest.
He showed good ability on the ball when linking up with Ryan Jack down the left, Sima sent across a dangerous ball with his left foot but, again, no Rangers player could get on the end of it. Then again, he showed brilliant ability to receive the ball with his back to the defender, turn then and sprint down the wing before releasing a great pass to Tavernier. The captain squared it across the box for the oncoming Lammers who, unfortunately, couldn’t turn it in.
His pace and power was a constant threat to the Livingston backline and he gives Rangers the opportunity to go long and over the top.
Adbdallah Sima’s Season so Far
Sima has one SPFL goal so far in 6 appearances with a 9% conversion rate. That being said, he also scored the screamer against PSV at Ibrox. When it comes to domestic appearances, he has only started 1 of the 6 games he’s appeared in.
He has shown ability in flashes so far this season. It’s clear what his biggest attributes are, pace and power. There aren’t many players who are as tall and strong as him who also have that level of pace. With Rangers now going back to playing with width, he’ll be a key player in the next few weeks.
Especially with Matondo injured, Michael Beale will be looking for Sima to provide the pace in the forward line. With the amount of injuries Sima is probably expected to start most games from now until the international break. Rangers are now massively relying on the likes of him and Kemar Roofe to continue the current win streak.
The upcoming games are huge for Rangers and Abdallah Sima himself. He’ll definitely get more a chance, especially domestically, to show what he can do. The flashes of quality have been there but he needs to be more consistent with it.
His decision making has been one of his biggest downfalls but that normally improves with experience and game time. Last time was a very promising display and one he needs to build on.
How did you rate Abdallah Sima’s performance last night? Were you encouraged by it? Do you think he can be the main man over the next few weeks?
In case you missed it, you can read the first player performance article on Cyriel Dessers here.
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