Rangers bolstered their first-team squad in the January transfer window by completing a number of deals in an attempt to improve Gio van Bronckhorst’s Ibrox squad.
Ross Wilson dipped into his transfer war chest to secure loans for Amad Diallo, Aaron Ramsey and James Sands, whilst striking permanent moves for John Souttar and Mateusz Zukowski, with the former set to officially join in the summer.
Bringing a player in from another club is one way to add further options to the squad. and another is unearthing a gem from the academy to make the breakthrough at senior level.
One Rangers B team player who may be ready to make such a step up is 18-year-old Tony Weston, who has been in phenomenal form for the youth teams.
The Gers signed the striker from English club Blackpool in 2020, where he had made his senior debut in the FA Cup.
His ex-Tangerines manager Simon Grayson previously heaped praise on him, saying: “He’s got so much enthusiasm. The lads were watching what he was doing, where his pure enthusiasm and love of being a professional footballer is at the front of his mind.
“He’s got 30-year-old lads behind him in the warm-up and I’ve never known a 16-year-old lead with stuff like that. He’s got confidence in his ability and it’s great for him.”
Since arriving at Ibrox, Weston has been in sensational goalscoring form. He was dubbed “clinical” by Gers coach Steven Smith and his record backs that up, with five goals in nine cup matches and 21 goals in the Scottish Lowland League for the B team.
This means that the 18-year-old has 26 goals in all competitions at youth level, suggesting that he is now knocking on the door of the first team. His record is sublime for the academy side and he will surely be grabbing Van Bronckhorst’s attention with his prolific scoring return.
The Dutch head coach must now offer him a chance in the senior team, whether that is before the end of the current campaign or in the summer for pre-season ahead of 2022/23. If Weston can make the step up, and his terrific tally of goals suggests that he can, then he would save Ross Wilson millions.
Rangers would not need to go into the transfer market to sign a striker if the teenage starlet proves himself as a genuine first-team option, and that is why he must be handed the opportunity to show what he can do at Ibrox. They would stop the club from needing to splash out seven-figure fees on a new striker, instead being able to invest that money on another area of the squad.