Steven Gerrard’s admission that Rangers will not be in a position to sign winger Ryan Kent from Liverpool on a permanent basis is a blow for fans, who have taken the player to their hearts.
Gerrard did also say he hopes to persuade the Merseyside giants to let the 22-year-old continue has development at Ibrox for another year, and with his contacts at Anfield, it is always a possibility.
But it remains to be seen whether it will be a viable option, with Liverpool possibly wanting him to be loaned out to an English Premier League or Championship side next term.
But all is not lost for Rangers, and should Kent not return to Glasgow next season, they may have a ready-made replacement for him at the club already.
Glenn Middleton, the 19-year-old sensation, has been in fine form for Graeme Murty’s reserve side this season, and having had a taste of first team action at the start of the season, it may be time for the teenager to get an opportunity again.
Middleton scored twice for Murty’s second string side, in their 3-2 win over Hibs yesterday — one of which was a superb curling strike — and his all-round display was top drawer.
The Northampton-born player (who is valued at £135k by Transfermarkt) never looked out of place when he was given an opportunity at the start of the season, which saw him score goals in the league, League Cup and Europa League, and is a hot prospect for the Ibrox club.
With only five games of the season remaining, and Rangers having an eight point cushion to Kilmarnock and Aberdeen, in third and fourth respectively, it could be the perfect time to slip Middleton back into the first team fold, and give him a run of games.
The extra experience would be invaluable for the player, and should he look the part, he could become a regular next season — whether Kent returns or not.
It is a move that could save Dave King and Rangers money, and would allow Gerrard to use his limited budget to strengthen other areas.
It seems like a logical choice to bring him into the side, but whether Gerrard chooses to do so with Rangers’ reserves now in the mix to topple Celtic, and win the reserve league, is another story.
Do you think Middleton could be the answer if Kent does not return? Would you give him a run in the side for the remainder of the season? Let us know your thoughts…
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