Time to shine: Rangers must trust in rarely-seen man as £3m-rated ace linked with exit – opinion
Glasgow Rangers manager Steven Gerrard must give Glenn Middleton his time to shine at the Govan stadium amid reports Leeds United remain interested in Ryan Kent.
What’s the word?
Former England international Danny Mills claims Rangers could insert a colossal new release clause into Kent’s contract as they are prepared to increase his wages in an attempt to convince him to stay at the club.
The Light Blues remain locked in negotiations with the £3.1m-rated winger’s representatives as his current contract will run out in 2023 and they are keen to offer him a contract extension with new and improved terms.
Speaking to Football Insider, Mills said: “Their value will definitely be going up because of their performances in the Europa League.
“Ryan Kent’s release clause previously was £20million and he has a fantastic season do they have the right to say ‘hold on, he’s now worth £30million or £40million’.
“They’ll be lots of negotiations going round with how the deal works and what their valuation is now.”
But, whilst it remains to be seen if Leeds will return for their long-term target in January, such an offer somewhere in that region might prove to be too tempting to ignore. If this is indeed the case, Gerrard must give Middleton the time to shine more often.
Time to shine
The 20-year-old has become something of a forgotten man in recent times, having burst on to the scene as a fresh-faced teenager, but failed to impress during two unsuccessful loan spells at Hibernian and Bradford last season.
He has been hampered by injuries so far this season whilst he has largely been starved of opportunities due to Kent’s emergence on the left wing.
Gerrard has given the current Scotland U21 international just 35 minutes of first-team football so far this season, whilst he has been omitted from the Europa League squad, and has yet to feature in the Scottish Premiership so far.
But, whilst we said just this last month that Rangers should get rid of the versatile player in January, we may have been just a tad too hasty.
The Ibrox boss believes Middleton can still have a part to play as the Gers seek to regain the title for the first time since the 2010-11 season after he was handed a surprise recall as he replaced Borna Barisic at left-back during the 4-0 victory over Falkirk in the Betfred Cup.
When asked about his future, Gerrard offered some words of encouragement, saying: “Glenn has been on loan and had injuries but he has been back within the group for four or five weeks now.
“He has been working hard and playing for an opportunity.
“We think he can do left-back, left-wingback or left-wing and it was a strong cameo from him.”
Middleton clearly left quite the lasting impression after his brief cameo against Falkirk, so Gerrard must give the young Scotsman more opportunities to prove himself on a regular basis, rather than handing him a few minutes here and there as this will only serve to hinder his development as a player.
The post Glasgow Rangers must trust Glenn Middleton amid Leeds United links to Ryan Kent first appeared on FootballFanCast.com.
Source: Football – Football Fan Cast