RAITH Rovers midfielder Grant Anderson believes it is “disrespectful” to established Rangers players for five Newcastle youngsters to immediately walk into the starting line-up.
The influence of Mike Ashley, the Magpies owner and a shareholder at Rangers, saw Gael Bigirimana, Haris Vuckic, Kevin Mbabu, Remie Streete and Shane Ferguson shipped to Ibrox on loan on deadline day.
And Rangers manager Kenny McDowall stunned Scottish football yesterday by revealing that all five players must be in the starting line-up when fit, following an edict from chief executive Derek Llambias and director Sandy Easdale.
Rovers will be the first side to cross swords with the new-look Rangers when the Fifers travel to Glasgow for their Scottish Cup fifth round tie on Sunday afternoon.
While Ferguson and Mbabu are currently injured, Bigirimana, Vuckic and Streete now appear guaranteed to be handed their debuts, making Anderson ponder how that could affect the rest of the Rangers squad.
Speaking prior to McDowall’s revelation, Anderson said: “[Mike Ashley] is the man with the money so he has come in and given them that option, they were always going to utilise anything at their disposal to help them out.
“I wouldn’t say it’s unfair, I’d say it’s maybe an advantage they have that other people don’t. Being Rangers, they will get stuff like that. Personally, I think if they threw them all in the team it would be disrespectful to the team just now. It could change the way they play dramatically. We will have to wait and see and, regardless of the team, ensure we’re really on our toes.
“I know a couple of the boys have sat on the bench for the first team, so they have a future at Newcastle. They are good players and could perhaps throw a couple of spanners into the works but we will just have to deal with it on the day.”
Raith have crashed to 4-0 and 6-1 defeats on their previous two trips to Ibrox. However Anderson added: “You can’t go to places like Ibrox and not be confident, you have to believe in yourself and do what’s right for the team.”