Rangers are interested in bringing Manchester City winger Brandon Barker to Ibrox on loan, according to a report, but it would be utterly pointless with homegrown youngsters deserving the chance to impress.
According to the Scottish Sun, Barker features on the “longlist” of targets drawn up by Gers boss Steven Gerrard and director of football Mark Allen.
Allen will know Barker well from his time in charge on City’s Academy but with the likes of Jamie Murphy, Daniel Candeias and Scott Arfield and Josh Windass already at the club it is difficult to see a place for Barker.
After the impressive performances by th Under-20s side in the club’s ambitious Games Programme, there are a few homegrown talents who deserve the chance to impress in the first-team.
The likes of Liam Burt and Glenn Middleton can’t be too far away from a first-team call up while Serge Atakayi is someone who wowed fans after being involved in the January trip to Florida.
Reported moves from a number of other players who can fit into the wide roles – like Liverpool’s Ryan Kent – also throw into doubt any chances that Barker would have of regular games at Ibrox.
The 21-year-old done well during a loan spell with Hibernian last season but never showed the sort of form at Easter Road consistently that would make him a realistic first-team option at Rangers.
The report claims that Hibs want to take Barker back to Edinburgh next season and that would probably be a better move for the 21-year-old.
With his name appearing on the longlist of targets it is likely that he will be scratched off as it is whittled down to a shortlist as Gerrard builds a squad capable of challenging bitter rivals Celtic for the title.
Rangers have made strides in recent years in improving their youth programme and there are young players at the club already who can step into the first-team and have as much of an impact as Barker would.
It surely makes sense that Gerrard looks to some of them as he gets to work.
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