Rangers have had their fair share of transfer success in recent years, ranging from the likes of Ryan Kent and Ianis Hagi to Alfredo Morelos and Kemar Roofe.
However, sometimes things do not work out as planned and some transfers do not go down as well as the manager would hope, with the signing of Mexican midfielder Carlos Pena in 2017 falling into this category.
Ex-Ibrox manager Pedro Caixinha brought him to the club from Guadalajara in 2017 for a reported fee of £2.2m and he endured a nightmare spell in Scotland.
The Mexican did score an impressive five goals in 14 games for the club, but his strike rate was not the problem. His all-around performances were lacking, according to the Portuguese coach, and he had issues off the pitch as well.
Caixinha previously said that Pena was playing at ’60 per cent’ of his capability and highlighted the struggles he was having in receiving the ball in tight areas.
The ex-Gers boss said: “He has much more to give, believe me. I think he’s at 60 per cent of his capabilities, the way I know him. But I think the first step for everyone to progress is knowing that you need to progress.
“It’s when you’re looking to add something and you say ‘Ok, I agree. Let’s work on it’. We are working. It’s a question of time. In terms of fitness, I can tell you, there is nothing he has to improve.
“Football is not all about fitness, football is about decisions. And we are preparing Carlos to make quick decisions when he is restricted in time and space.
“When he has time and space, he performs his football. He just needs to adapt when he doesn’t have time and space – and that’s nothing to do with fitness.”
Steven Gerrard and the club made the decision to terminate his contract in 2019, with alcohol-related discipline problems cited as one of the reasons behind his exit. Andy Halliday once dubbed him a “modern alcoholic” and claimed that he could smell the beer on him in training.
This shows that he had issues on and off the pitch and the Gers were forced to ship him off on a free transfer, which meant that they did not recoup any money back from the initial £2.2m they spent on him.
Therefore, the deal was a nightmare from start to finish for both Rangers and Pena. Hopefully he has since been able to overcome his alcohol problems and become settled off the pitch, because his health is more important than his football career.