Glasgow Rangers signed several players in the summer, but one player has surprisingly stood out from the rest…
Steven Gerrard’s side are gearing up to face Standard Liege at the Stade Maurice Dufrasne in the Europa League group stages on Thursday night.
According to The Daily Record, there are no new concerns for Rangers, as Kemar Roofe has returned to the squad after missing the 2-0 victory over Celtic in the first Old Firm derby of the season due to injury.
Rangers signed Roofe on a four-year-deal from Belgian side Anderlecht for an undisclosed fee, rumoured to be around £4.5m, via Transfermarkt. The 27-year-old made 16 appearances for Anderlecht, and scored seven times in a campaign that was disrupted by injury problems. But he could turn out to be a bargain buy for the Light Blues.
It’s fair to say that Gerrard has grown accustomed to using experienced footballers far more often as he balances the demands and pressures of domestic and European competitions. Indeed, he has called upon the likes of Jon McLaughlin and Jermain Defoe on regular occasions in recent weeks.
Strength and depth in the squad will be so important if his side are to challenge for silverware this season, which is where the Jamaican international comes in. Roofe’s return to fitness will give Gerrard several options to choose from upfront, and his experience in the Belgian Pro League makes him a useful attacking asset. It’s worth remembering that he scored six goals and supplied two assists in 13 games in the Belgian top flight last term, via Transfermarkt.
Whilst we aren’t for one minute suggesting that he will supplant Alfredo Morelos anytime soon, the £4m-rated ace may get his time to shine to ease the burden on Gerrard’s first-choice striker.
After arriving at the Ibrox outfit from Anderlecht, Roofe has already scored twice in five games in the Scottish Premiership this season, whilst he has averaged 2 shots per game, via WhoScored. In comparison, fellow new-boy Cedric Itten has only managed one shot per game, although the majority of his appearances have come as a substitute from the bench, as per WhoScored.
Once hailed as a “hard-working” professional by his former teammate Barry Douglas and a “cold-blooded” finisher by ex-manager Thomas Christiansen, the versatile player, who can play in the centre, on the left or right of the midfield, as well as operating as a centre-forward, could turn out to be a true bargain, as he can provide competition and cover for Morelos and Itten.
Gerrard has shown that he isn’t afraid of making a few tactical tweaks here and there. Why not let Roofe off the leash against Standard Liege in the Europa League?
AND in other news, Glasgow Rangers must take a gamble on long-term target Jack Wilshere…