Back in April of this year, it was confirmed that Rangers defender David Bates would join German outfit Hamburg at the expiration of his contract at the Scottish giants.
The centre back made the move to Ibrox initially on loan from Raith Rovers back in 2016 before making that move permanent a year later, with the 22-year-old going on to appear 28 times for the club before his somewhat surprising departure earlier this year.
And it was an exit that didn’t go down particularly well among plenty of Rangers fans on Twitter, with several fuming at the club’s inability to tie him down to a new deal…
Great move for him. Mind-numbingly dumb move on our part letting him go. His star was clearly on the rise. Perfect physique for the Scottish game. But no, let’s continue paying Alves 30k. Idiots.
— Joycie Banachek (@JoycieBanachek) April 12, 2018
Another promising young player leaving for nothing, disgraceful
— John alexander (@82Zander) April 12, 2018
Ridiculous decision to sell him now.
— Lyndon Bowes (@Lyndon11) April 12, 2018
Absolute farce and mismanagement that Wilson and Bates have been allowed to leave for next to nothing.
— Dan G (@danthegersman) April 12, 2018
Whoever at Rangers who authorised the sales of Danny Wilson & David Bates needs sacked immediately
— Kirky (@RossKirkwood1) April 12, 2018
Bates and Wilson both leaving for the minimum. Poor business but must have a couple defenders lined up to sign in summer.
— euan (@euanm14) April 12, 2018
Another managerial mistake. Big talent, a defender who can defend has been rare at Ibrox over the last few years.
— Scott Methven (@ScootMeevo) April 12, 2018
And with the Scotland international going on and proving his worth in 2. Bundesliga for Hamburg this term, it is becoming clearer by the day that the Gers hierarchy made a huge blunder not keeping hold of the 22-year-old.
Ultimately, Bates moved to Rangers on a development loan to begin with before making that permanent in January 2017, albeit he only featured eight times in the 2016/17 campaign under Pedro Caixinha to suggest that he was some way down the centre back pecking order.
And with no Scottish Premiership appearances under the Portuguese at the start of the 2017/18 season, things didn’t look good for the Scottish youngster, only for the appointment of Graeme Murty to reignite his Light Blues career given he featured 15 times in the league under the ex-Reading defender, including eight successive starts between December and March.
At the time, Bates was beginning to deliver the goods for the Gers to suggest that he had a bright future at the club, and with the Light Blues struggling somewhat defensively throughout Murty’s tenure, he appeared to hold an answer to their problems.
Yet it was back in April in which Hamburg confirmed a deal for the 22-year-old when his contract expired at Rangers in the summer, and what a move that is proving to be given Bates has come on leaps and bounds in Germany this season.
The centre back has started 11 of their 14 league games so far this term in which time he has helped the second tier side to eight clean sheets, at the same time earning himself a call-up to Alex McLeish’s senior Scotland squad last month – that itself is the clearest indication of his meteoric rise.
Yet Rangers fans must be wondering why his development couldn’t have happened at their club – instead, letting him go, as well as Bruno Alves, forced new manager Steven Gerrard to spend quite a bit of money improving his defensive ranks in the form of Connor Goldson and Nikola Katic.
Overall, the 22-year-old appears to have got his career going in Germany with Hamburg, which makes Rangers’ decision to let him leave earlier this year all the more baffling – they certainly made a huge blunder letting the youngster go.
Rangers fans… what do you think? Let us know!