THE past week has been a trying one for Steven Gerrard at Rangers.
After the Betfred Cup semi-final defeat to Aberdeen, then the midweek draw at home to Kilmarnock in the Premiership, murmurings of doubt and discontent have surfaced.
Well, what I will say to that is whether you are in the media and being critical, or a supporter who is now questioning Steven’s ability to do the job, you are misguided.
If people don’t trust Steven at this moment, that is their problem.
But he will not be deterred.
I’m certain he will stick to his beliefs, and be confident he will get the football club to where he wants it to be.
Steven absolutely knows what he is doing and will get it right.
I have no doubt that he will go on to become a top-notch manager and be very, very successful.
Any negativity he has been aware of in the past week will not make him deviate from what he believes in.
Sure, lessons will have been taken on board and there may well be a need to reassess certain things and make minor adjustments here and there.
But Steven will not rip up his blueprint and start again.
I’m certain he won’t be in a state of panic, that’s for sure.
He will be calm and measured, as ever. There is no need for any alarm bells.
For most of his adult life, Steven was with the one football club, and that served him fairly well.
Being at Liverpool will have instilled a certain belief and values in him.
I wouldn’t expect him to change from that. And rightly so.
When you look at the bigger picture, you need to remember that he has only been at Rangers for less than five months, and has had only one transfer window to make changes.
Backed by the Rangers board, he has made some very good signings.
But you also have to remember that many of them – whether they be on loan or are there on a permanent contract – are young lads.
They haven’t had to cope with the physical and mental demands of playing three high-pressure games in less than a week on a regular basis for a big club.
Most recently, there was the Europa League tie against Spartak Moscow, followed by the Aberdeen semi then a tough league game against Killie.
Had he had a bigger squad, Steven would have been able to make changes here and there. But he doesn’t have that luxury.
So not winning every game is totally understandable, and to be expected when you have high demands on you all the time in short bursts.
It takes time to build a squad and it takes time to bring success. It doesn’t happen overnight and certainly not in one transfer window.
The other reason for the spotlight increasing on Steven just now is because Celtic appear to have turned the corner.
They have been playing some very good football and scoring plenty of goals. It always adds to the pressure when the team across the city is going well.
It shows how quickly things can change. Not very long ago there was negativity surrounding Brendan Rodgers and his players, and everyone was praising Steven and his Rangers players to the hilt.
But Steven is wise enough not to get too down when there is a bit of heat, and not to get carried away when everyone is patting you on the back.
Every manager – young or old, experienced or inexperienced – faces constant pressure.
Not every single day sees the sun shining on you and every bit of luck going your way.
I know from the experiences I had as a manager – whether it was in my early days at Liverpool or during my last time there six years ago – that you don’t get every break of the ball and you can sometimes think everything is against you.
But you must never stop believing in your principles, and what you think is the right way to go about your business.
What goes on behind closed doors at a football club is also important and Steven will still have the full backing of his staff and squad of players.
They all absolutely believe in him.
In the past week, he has challenged his players to do better and achieve more.
If they don’t, he has told them he will look to replace them in January.
That’s quite right. It’s what a manager needs to do.
It’s up to them to respond positively and in the right manner.
They have a big two months ahead of them in Europe and domestically, and they need to show they are worthy of being a part of Steven’s plans.
The fans also need to continue to play their part.
As I’ve always said, success has a better chance of being achieved if everyone is united, on and off the park.
Yes, it’s only natural to be frustrated and disappointed at certain times during a season – but being negative isn’t going to help.
Any doubters should be mindful of what Steven inherited, and the way he has improved things at Ibrox in such a short space of time.
He has taken the club in the right direction, and the players he has at his disposal for the first-team squad are much better than this time last year.
That is for certain.