Vital Cardiff City reviews the season on a player by player basis. Today it’s the turn of central midfielder Gavin Rae… …
Gavin Rae, Central midfield.
Joined pre-season from Rangers
Gavin Rae was brought in to compete with Riccy Scimeca in midfield and arrived with good pedigree and experience. He did manage to catch the eye with some busy performances but during a start where our creativity and finishing was lacking – it was inevitable that a player like Rae would be questioned.
Tenacious, energetic and committed – Rae has many supporters amongst the fans, but he has taken some stick too. His distribution can be poor even with the simplest pass going astray whilst although he does try to attack from midfield – the quality has not been there in the final third.
Rae`s biggest problem has been the inevitable comparisons with Scimeca – whose partnership with McPhail was excellent. In truth, Rae is not an enforcer and lacks the physical and aerial prowess to boss the midfield. He also failed to contribute the goals of Scimeca, managing just 4 over the season whilst we failed to win every game in which Rae scored (3 draws, 1 defeat).
Towards the latter end of the season, Rae found his role within the team and put in some impressive performances. His closing down remained good but he applied it with more composure and he became more willing to carry the ball – often driving 10-15 yards forward before releasing.
In short, Rae was an important member of the team this season, despite having little competition. He is often labelled an ‘unsung hero` for the sheer amount of space covered and work he gets through. He improved over the season and gre into the partnership with McPhail and can certainly be called a successful signing.
Season Rating: 7