This article is part of Football FanCast’s Transfer Focus series, which provides opinion and analysis on recent transfer news…
Zak Rudden has joined Plymouth Argyle on a six-month loan deal, and it should open the door for Eamonn Brophy to come to Rangers.
The 19-year-old striker has swapped Ibrox for the southwest of England and League Two, leaving Steven Gerrard with not many options behind Jermain Defoe and Alfredo Morelos. Rudden joins Kyle Lafferty in leaving the Gers this summer, although the Northern Irishman saw his contract torn up.
With both Rudden and Lafferty departing it would be no surprise to see Gerrard dip into the market to strengthen his options up top.
Despite Morelos and Defoe starting the season on fire, the club has been linked to strikers at various points over this window to act as their cover. The most recent name linked to provide support to the proficient pair was Kilmarnock’s Eamonn Brophy.
In Morelos and Defoe, Gerrard has two forwards that will score goals for fun, but to go with just those two is a huge risk with four competitions to fight for.
While the Colombian goal-getter looks like he’s learned from last season’s disciplinary shambles, it’s still the early season and the Gers have cruised through the majority of their matches with little tension.
Morelos’ indiscipline largely came in the more intense games (see the Ufa red and his battles with Aberdeen’s Scott McKenna as pertinent examples), so we’re yet to see if he’s truly past the problems yet.
On top of the 23-year-old’s question marks, Defoe isn’t risk-free either. At 36, he’s not going to get fitter. So, having a third option could be beneficial for both the strikers currently at Ibrox.
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This is where Brophy would come in, operating as a reliable supporting act to the duo. There’s no guarantee he’d want to fill such a role having just come off a stellar season at Rugby Park that culminated in him making his Scotland debut, but he’d be ideal for the position.
Brophy’s a reliable Premiership player and, like Lafferty, can put in a shift on the park, allowing the more creative players and potentially a strike partner the space to create and score themselves.
Brophy could be the big benefactor of Rudden’s temporary departure, and the Gers should definitely bring the 23 year-old in before one of the aforementioned duo costs them either through injury or indiscipline.