That Rangers’ recent recruitment has been poor is not up for debate given the return they have had across multiple windows.
But the staleness on view at Pittodrie was startling as they failed to take advantage of Celtic’s toothless display against Motherwell at Celtic Park.
Yesterday’s back four that started the game against Aberdeen was the same Rangers back four who kicked off the 2020-21 season against the Pittodrie side.
Borna Barisic, Leon Balogun, Connor Goldson and James Tavernier all started that campaign – several regimes ago – which got underway with a 1-0 win over Aberdeen; Ryan Kent scored the only goal of the game.
What does it say about recruitment that more than three years down the line and the same custodians are charged with the same role within the team?
The very fact that there is chatter about a return for Kent from Fenerbahce in the January transfer window would suggest loudly and clearly that the message about player trading and the model that Rangers need to be adopting is simply not getting through.
It would be beyond short-sighted for Rangers to look to Kent in January, a player who walked out of the club without the Ibrox side banking a solitary penny, regardless of how much of a short-term fix it may be.
Ultimately, they need to be aiming for a model that is self-sufficient. Calvin Bassey and his £20m move cannot be a one off.
So the onus for Rangers isn’t just on getting the model right but also in getting the most out of the players they have.
Todd Cantwell loves a selfie and seems to have taken to the insular politics of Scottish football like a duck to water. Indeed, his antics at Pittodrie would suggest that is not his only affinity with water.
He needs to get his focus on the kind of form that invite suitors to come calling, and not those who specialise in scuba suits.