James Tavernier has undoubtedly made a significant impact at Rangers Football Club since his arrival in 2015 for £250,000. The English right-back has not only captained the team to a couple of trophies but has also etched his name in the club's history books and been inducted into our prestigious Hall of Fame and rightly so in my opinion. However, like any other player, Tavernier's tenure at Rangers has had its ups and downs which understandably splits opinion in our support.

On the positive side, Tavernier's impact on Rangers cannot be understated. Since joining from Wigan Athletic, he has consistently been one of the team's most influential players. His attacking prowess from the right back position is second to none. Tavernier's ability to provide consistent goal contributions, regularly scoring and assisting, has been crucial to the club's limited success.

In his first season alone, Tavernier recorded an impressive ten goals and 15 assists in all competitions. This ability to contribute to goal scoring opportunities has continued throughout his time at the club, making him a constant threat for opposing defenders. His presence on set pieces is also worth mentioning, as Tavernier possesses an exceptional ability to deliver pin-point crosses into dangerous areas and score amazing free kicks. My two favourites are the free kick against Dundee United from 35 yards during the title winning season and at Parkhead against Celtic last season albeit in a 3-2 defeat the execution was immense.

Tavernier's leadership qualities cannot be ignored. After being named captain in 2018 by Steven Gerrard who is one of the greatest captains of his generation so must of saw something in him in the first place to give him the armband. He took on the responsibility with great professionalism and passion. His leadership on and off the pitch has been vital in guiding the team to League success in the 2020/21 season, winning the Scottish Cup in 2022 and the unforgettable run to Seville to the Europa League final in 2022. Most notably during the run to Seville Tavernier took his game to levels we never knew he had and was at the peak of his powers which resulted in a right back finishing top goal scorer with six goals in European competition which doesn’t happen very often.

However, like any other player, Tavernier has experienced his fair share of criticism. One aspect that has often been highlighted is his defensive capabilities. While he excels in the attacking third, there have been instances where Tavernier's defensive positioning and decision making have been called into question. Despite being reliable in the opposition box, his susceptibility to being caught out of position defensively in his own box has cost the team on several occasions. Tavernier's role as captain has been the subject of debate. Some argue that his leadership on the field has been exemplary, while others believe that he lacks the commanding presence required to lead Rangers through difficult moments. It is worth noting that as captain, Tavernier has faced mounting pressure and expectations, which may have impacted the team's performances during challenging periods. In big moments he has always stepped up with crucial goals or assists when we have needed him to.

Tavernier's lack of consistent success is often a point of criticism that people consistently label him a serial loser because he is getting compared to Captains at Celtic because they are more successful which I think is more the fact they have a had a better team than us through out that time. Rangers lack of success since coming back to the top flight is not solely down to Tavernier.

I'd certainly argue James Tavernier has undoubtedly had a major impact at Rangers. His attacking prowess, consistency, and leadership have been instrumental in the club's recent success. However, his defensive capabilities and ability to handle pressure as captain have been areas of concern at times. As with any player, Tavernier has had his highs and lows, but overall, his contributions to Rangers Football Club cannot be denied. He may of lost a yard of pace but that’s understandable when your bombing up and down the right wing for 50+ games a season. Indeed, more recently, he doesn’t seem to get the cover from midfield players he did in previous seasons which is strange as the full backs are constantly the only width we have. There have also calls this season to drop Tavernier and strip him of the captaincy which I believe is ridiculous as Devine and Sterling are nowhere yet near his standard and that taking the armband off him won’t achieve anything. I’m a big fan of James Tavernier and believe he is the best right back I’ve seen play for Rangers. I hope in the next two seasons he can bring the collective success that his individual accolades deserve and become our next player to get a deserved testimonial.

In conclusion, I believe history will be kind to the Rangers skipper and only once he leaves the club will he be fully appreciated for what he has given us over the years. For a right back to score 103 goals and have 117 assists is remarkable and hopefully we will see many more in the near future.

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