'There's an opportunity there' - Holt makes claim about Rangers youngsters
By James Black
Rangers midfielder Jason Holt has claimed the current group of youngsters in the club’s Under-20 side can push on and earn themselves a first-team spot this season.
Pedro Caixinha hasn’t been shy in promoting Academy players since taking over at Ibrox in March with Aidan Wilson, Jamie Barjonas, Myles Beerman and Kyle Bradley all making their senior bows towards the end of last season.
Holt started the Under-20’s Challenge Cup tie with Championship side Dumbarton and has worked with the bulk of Graeme Murty’s squad at close-quarters this season.
Central defender Ross McCrorie followed them into the first-team this season after Bruno Alves and Danny Wilson both picked up injuries and 24-year-old Holt admits he has been impressed with the youngsters in training and in games.
“I’ve been really impressed with all the boys in the under-20s who have come up to train with us.” Holt told RangersTV, as quoted by the club’s official website.
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“They are training with us on a more regular basis, and as you saw, Ross McCrorie got his chance and did really well.
“I was delighted for him as he deserved it, and all the boys who have come up have done really well.
“Like I said earlier, there are going to be opportunities through the season where people drop out the team, and someone needs to step-up and take that opportunity.
“Ross did that, and I think it shows the rest of the younger lads and the 20s there’s an opportunity there.”
McCrorie started the games with Partick Thistle, Celtic and Hamilton and impressed fans and pundits alike with his cool, composed performances at the heart of Rangers’ defence.
The 19-year-old is highly-rated within Ibrox and supporters are hopeful of getting to see much more of him in the first-team as the club focuses on developing their own players at their Auchenhowie base.
With the likes of McCrorie, Barjonas, Wilson, Beerman, Zak Rudden and Robby McCrorie on the fringes of the first-team, it’s clear that Rangers’ Academy staff have made huge strides in the right direction.
The club’s ambitious ‘Academy Games’ programme – where they face elite youth sides from across Europe- should also be a huge boost to the players’ chances of making the first-team as they test themselves against some of the best sides across the continent.
In latest Rangers news, fans reacted to Kenny Miller playing for the Under-20’s against Brentford B.