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Rangers fumbled the ball with Kenny McLean

Retired Scotland international Kris Commons recently claimed that Rangers should attempt to sign Billy Gilmour on loan from Chelsea in the summer and take advantage of his lack of game-time on loan at Norwich.

The midfielder has not started a Premier League game since 18 September, losing his place in the middle of the park for the Norfolk side.

Interestingly, one of the players keeping Gilmour out of the team also has strong connections with Rangers – that’s Kenny McLean.

Would McLean be a good signing?

Yes

Yes

No

No

Not only was the midfielder a reported target for Rangers in 2020, he also came through the ranks at Ibrox in the academy. He played for the under-17 team for two years before joining St Mirren, where he eventually broke through into the first team.

McLean went on to join Aberdeen and then signed for Norwich in January 2018. He made 253 Premiership appearances for St Mirren and Aberdeen, scoring 36 goals and providing 21 assists to earn himself a move down south.

The £25k-per-week beast has gone on to make a name for himself in the Championship and the Premier League with Norwich. Despite suffering relegation in the 2019/20 campaign, Canaries boss Daniel Farke hailed McLean’s Premier League performances and claimed that he is “irreplaceable”.

He said: “Kenny for me last season was unbelievably important and he has developed further. He is a versatile, all-round player with the game to play a number of positions.

“Let’s be honest, we have some players with great possession skills, or finding a key pass, or maybe delivering a set-piece. But he is probably our most complete midfielder. He is competitive, his workload and his endurance are good and he is definitely our best defensive header.

“He is aggressive in the duels and our most dynamic midfielder.

“He is also composed on the ball, and a left-footer. He offers many skills, and that physicality at this level is irreplaceable for us. If you can dominate the ball in a game then maybe the defensive skills are not as important.”

The Scotland international has played 112 times for Norwich since the move from Aberdeen, playing 45 times in the Premier League and winning two Championship titles. In that time, he has scored eight goals and provided 15 assists from a deep-lying midfield position.

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This suggests that he has the quality required to be a top-class player for Rangers, as he has proven his ability in the top two tiers in England and in the Premiership with St Mirren and Aberdeen. Therefore, the Gers fumbled the ball by opting against keeping him in their academy at the start of his career.

Instead of ending up in England with Norwich, McLean could have come through the academy at Ibrox and bossed the midfield for years at Rangers. They could also have brought him through into the first team before making a decent chunk of change by selling him on, with Transfermarkt valuing him at £4.05m in 2019. Instead, they axed him from the academy and watched on as he has enjoyed a fairly successful career.

He’s one who slipped through the cracks at Ibrox…

AND in other news, Imagine him & Aribo: Wilson could land dream Rangers midfield with “fabulous” maestro…

Article title: Rangers fumbled the ball with Kenny McLean

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