Ex-BBC pundit Noel Whelan has backed Rangers to bring goalkeeper Jack Butland to the Ibrox this summer and believes that he could emulate Joe Hart’s level of success at Celtic if he makes the move to the Scottish Premiership.
The Lowdown: Bit-part player
The 29-year-old made the switch to Crystal Palace back in 2020 when he put pen to paper on a three-year deal from Stoke City, but has only made 17 appearances during his two-year spell at Selhurst Park so far.
Despite still having just over 12 months remaining on his current contract with the Eagles, this lack of game time has caused plenty of speculation that his future in the capital might be up in the air, with The Sun recently reporting that the Gers are set to battle it out with newly-promoted Bournemouth in the race for his signature during the upcoming transfer window.
The Latest: Whelan urges Butland to join Rangers
Whelan says that the possibility of playing Champions League football could persuade Butland to join the Glasgow giants. He told Football Insider‘s Ewan Kingsbury:
“Jack has been on the radar for a long time now in England.
“But look, just like Joe Hart, I think this could be a perfect scenario for him. We’ve seen how going to Celtic has reignited his career, and I think it’s the same for Butland and Rangers.
“He’s got experience and talent – and a consistent Jack Butland could make the world of difference in between the sticks.
“He could well be playing week-in, week-out in the Champions League – and that will be hard to turn down.”
The Verdict: Ideal McGregor replacement
There’s no doubt that the Light Blues’ links to the nine-cap international come as a result of current Rangers shot-stopper Allan McGregor’s contract expiration, and despite limited opportunities, the former Potters star could prove to be the ideal replacement.
The Bristol-born talent, who was once dubbed an “absolutely outstanding” player by ex-Stoke boss Gary Rowett, has got plenty of experience at a high level under his belt, having made 293 outings during his senior playing career, keeping a total of 83 clean sheets out of those, as per Transfermarkt.
Should Rangers sign Butland?
The opportunity of playing Champions League football is a huge pulling factor for any player but could be huge when it comes down to Butland making a decision on his future, especially if he wants any chance at reviving his England career, so there’s a strong possibility that we could be seeing him in a Rangers shirt at the start of next season.
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