As the heat is turned up on the Scottish champions in an increasingly tense title race, Giovanni van Bronckhorst has made it clear he will adopt a similarly blinkered approach amid scrutiny of his team’s recently erratic domestic performances.
Since replacing Gerrard in November, van Bronckhorst has suffered just one defeat in 21 games. Rangers have reached the last 16 of the Europa League and still have the destiny of their title defence in their own hands despite their league form since the winter break.
A sizeable number of Rangers fans have expressed concern over the Ibrox club’s January transfer window activity with both Aaron Ramsey and Amad Diallo having made little impact so far since their loan arrivals from Juventus and Manchester United.
Failure to translate dominance of their last two league games against Dundee United and Motherwell into maximum points has also seen van Bronckhorst’s team selections attract criticism. None of which comes as a surprise to the Dutchman who insists he will continue to have the courage of his own convictions in the job.
“I know the club,” he said. “I know the feeling of becoming a manager of a big club. It comes with pressure, it comes with questions.
“So for me, that’s what I expected, what I’m used to. But for me the most important thing is to be clear on the path we want to go, how we want to play.
“I know I’m responsible for the tactics, for picking the starting line-up. So I don’t need any advice or influence.
“Of course people will talk about it - in a very good way and also in a very negative way when the results aren’t there.
“But I just have to be clear in my head and go on the path I want to go with my team and with the club. For me that’s the most important thing.
“Everyone is entitled to comments or criticism. That’s also the beauty of football. Everyone has opinions. But in the end I have to make my decisions how I want to make them and that’s only with my own thinking in mind.”
As Rangers prepare to face St Johnstone at McDiarmid Park on Wednesday, van Bronckhorst’s focus is on ensuring his team rediscover a greater degree of efficiency in front of goal. It’s an area in which his coach Roy Makaay is employed to specialise.
“He is talking a lot with the players, doing a lot of finishing on goal (in training) with the strikers and midfield players,” said van Bronckhorst. “We are looking into images of games. We need to improve that area, so we are working on that. Hopefully, tomorrow we will see a difference.
“The recent games in the league, we have created a lot of chances but didn’t convert as many as we wanted. That’s why we had the draws. It’s obviously a point we need to improve.
"It’s quite clear. We are coming into the end of the season with the last 10 games and they are all important. In every game we need to get the three points.”