Rangers must renew their interest in this proven goalscorer in January
COMMENT By Matt Farr
Scottish Premiership giants Rangers find themselves short of attacking options after striker Joel Garner became the latest name on the Ibrox injury-list.
Garner suffered a shoulder injury in the 2-1 Old Firm derby defeat to Celtic on Saturday, and has been ruled out for around three months.
Rangers boss Mark Warburton is now set to be without one of his premier attacking threats for much of the second-half of the campaign, and should dip into the transfer market to find a suitable replacement.
The Gers chief does still have Kenny Miller and Martyn Waghorn at his disposal, but should renew his interest in summer transfer target Tom Bradshaw in a bid to boost his firepower.
The Daily Mail reported in the summer that the Ibrox outfit had joined the race to sign the 24year-old, after he handed in a transfer request at Walsall in a bid to enhance his international prospects with Wales.
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However, perhaps the biggest issue in any potential deal for Rangers in the new window is that Bradshaw completed a move from Walsall to Barnsley in the summer, where he has been for just six months.
The Championship outfit will not be looking to sell the striker so soon after joining, having been a valuable first-team player, but it should not deter Rangers from making an approach.
It certainly wouldn’t be the first time that a player has left a club after just six months.
Bradshaw has scored four goals from 21 league appearances for Barnsley this season, with the club sitting eighth in the league.
An ambitious and speedy striker, the one-time capped Welsh international fits the bill for Rangers, who in Joe Garner, lost a player willing to run into the channels and make a nuisance of himself in an opposition defence.
He is a proven goalscorer, having netted 62 goals from 208 appearances during his career, including a particularly prolific spell at Walsall that saw him score 40 goals in two seasons in League One.
Goals have been much harder to come by in the Championship this season, but given his other contributions to the club’s impressive league position, he won’t be too concerned.
But he would certainly have an impact at Ibrox, where Rangers are determined to meet their ambitions for the season.
They have not yet given up hope on catching rivals Celtic in the title-race, but their defeat on Saturday was a huge blow, and they are now 19 points behind having played a game more.
Aberdeen, meanwhile, are closing in on Rangers’ second-place position, and Bradshaw could prove crucial to helping the Gers fight off the Dons.
Warburton will have the finances and the backing to do business this month, and he will be looking far and wide for the right deal.
Bradshaw would be a good deal.
In other Rangers news, ex-Gers midfielder Alex Rae believes the club must strengthen this area in January.