As Rangers moved ever close to the transfer deadline on January 31st, the external areas of Ibrox were a cauldron of noise with the Gers busy finalising deals during what was Gio van Bronckhorst’s first window at the wheel.
It’s difficult to call it a roaring success as the Gers currently sit second in the Premiership but on that day, it felt like a turning point in the title race.
Rangers had signed, albeit temporarily, a genuinely world-class midfielder, a technical asset that no one else boasts in the division, and indeed something you’d be hard-pressed to find south of the border in the Premier League either.
Along came a certain Aaron Ramsey, an elegant and industrious player who was dubbed the club’s greatest signing since Gazza.
Yet, five weeks later, Rangers are no better off and the Welshman has been consigned to the treatment table.
In his absence, John Lundstrum has turned his career around in Glasgow and marked his finest moment in blue just a few weeks ago when Van Bronckhorst’s men miraculously knocked Borussia Dortmund out of the Europa League.
That said, domestically Ramsey has clearly left a hole that needs filling.
Whether or not he’ll be in Scotland next term to make an impression on Rangers remains to be seen, but had they kept one academy darling, they wouldn’t be requiring his services.
That happens to be Billy Gilmour, someone who is equally calm and composed in possession of a football.
He left Rangers as a teenager for a grand total of £500k and even if Chelsea were impossible to turn down, the league’s second-place side will no doubt feel a sense of regret.
After all, the 20-year-old has been hailed as “world-class” by none other than former Celtic titan Roy Keane, and at times, it’s difficult to argue with that assessment.
He is now a regular in the Scotland side and following a period on loan at relegation-threatened Norwich, his transfer value has rocked.
Per Transfermarkt, there has been a staggering increase of 1344% to £13.5m from the fee he was sold for all those years ago. It’s clear to see why, as this is a youngster boasting 22 senior appearances for Chelsea.
As a result, his price will only rise further in the next few campaigns and consequently, Rangers may well rue cashing in on him so early in his career.
Had the club been able to keep him at Rangers, he could have made them a small fortune.