By Richard Parks
Davie Provan has slammed Rangers for the “embarrassment” of losing rising star David Bates to Hamburg on a free transfer.
The Bundesliga club confirmed on Thursday that Bates, 21, will sign a four-year deal in the summer and bring to an end his promising spell with his boyhood club.
Manager Graeme Murty subsequently admitted the Ibrox giants wanted the former Raith defender to stay at the club but couldn’t match the terms on offer from Hamburg.
Sky Sports pundit and former Celtic midfielder Provan questioned how the Gers managed to let Bates leave the club for nothing.
“Bates’ departure to Hamburg is an embarrassment,” said Provan in the Scottish Sun on Sunday. “You don’t want to lose good players unless you’re getting top dollar. Somebody needs their backside kicked for letting the kid run his contract down.”
Bates originally joined the Gers on a six-month development loan under Mark Warburton and subsequently an 18-month permanent contract in January 2017.
Bates has made 17 appearances this season and was a regular in the side following the winter break and injury to Bruno Alves.
Football Insider verdict:
Provan is correct in stating Rangers messed up by waiting until the turn of the year before offering Bates a new contract. Clearly, they were not expecting the 6ft 3in centre-back to progress so quickly, or to be a mainstay of the team this season. However, there is no way the club could match the terms offered by Hamburg, who could be playing in Bundesliga II next season, but have been mainstays of the top tier and have the kind of wealth that Rangers can only aspire to match. Even had Rangers’ top brass been quicker off the mark – and they certainly should have been – Bates could still have run down his deal, waited for the offers to roll in and then headed out. That is a fact of life at the modern Ibrox.