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Rangers have struck gold by signing this Northern Irish ace and here is why he can help them end Celtic’s dominance



Rangers have struck gold by signing Steven Davis and here is why

Rangers are strengthening their squad this winter transfer window in a bid to win the Scottish Premiership.  This has already seen the Ibrox side sign two Premier League stalwarts in Steven Davis (h/t Sky Sports) and Jermain Defoe.

The Northern Ireland national team captain is back in Glasgow for a third stint. The 34-year-old midfielder spent the second half of the 2007/08 season at the Ibrox on loan from Fulham before sealing a permanent move that summer. He spent the next four seasons with the Gers, scoring 21 goals and providing 60 assists in 200 appearances.

Davis sealed his move to south coast side Southampton in the summer of 2012 where he made 226 appearances, scoring 14 goals and setting up a further 26 goals.

Good or Bad Move?

The Ballymena-born midfielder enjoyed the most productive part of his career, in terms of statistics and titles, during his time north of the border. Although now heading into the twilight years of his career, Davis should relish playing in the Premiership again.

The last three titles Rangers won (08/09, 09/10, 10/11) came during his time at the Ibrox. He also won the League Cup twice (09/10 and 10/11). The central midfielder also won the Scottish Cup in 08/09 season. During his last season at Rangers in 2011/12, he was nominated Rangers’ and the Scottish Premiership’s Player of the Year.

The versatile midfielder mainly plays as a central midfielder but can also line up as an attacking midfielder, defensive midfielder or as a right midfielder. Capable of putting in strong defensive contributions, Davis could offer more cover to the Rangers defence.

A good passer who is able to deliver crosses into the danger area, Steven Davis can also bag goals given his penchant for taking long shots. Capped 105 times by Northern Ireland, Davis has superb concentration levels. He will be a valuable option as Gerrard chases down this season’s Premiership title.

Still Effective?

Steven Davis finds himself in similar circumstances to former England striker Defoe. He was a regular in the Premier League for the Saints the last term but has found himself surplus to requirements after falling down the pecking order in a struggling Southampton side.

However, his stats suggest he can still play at a high level when called upon. The midfielder has only played around 200 minutes of football this season and yet managed to thread in 1.45 through balls per 90 minutes which is not far off last campaign’s 1.67. It is also better than the 1.24 he averaged the season before.

Also worth noting, Davis has averaged 3.61 passes into the box per 90 minutes. This is actually better than the 2.35 and 3.12 in the 2016/17 and 2017/18 seasons respectively. The Northern Ireland captain’s key passes (passes that set up a shot for a teammate) continue to rise over the past three years. He has gone from 0.95 per 90 minutes in 2016/17 to 1.17 the last term and then 2.17 this season.

Read More: Rangers stand to gain a lot on and off the field by successfully wrapping up a loan deal for this veteran 163-goal striker

Davis has not played enough this season to draw a proper conclusion. However, from those numbers, one can conclude that he hasn’t shown a significant drop even at 34. Now, he has another shot at helping Rangers clinch the title and end their bitter rivals’ dominance.


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Tottenham’s best bet for replacing this outbound No. 9 would be to sign any of these two goalscoring aces



Tottenham Opinion: 2 Fernando Llorente replacements Spurs should look at

Athletic Bilbao president Aitor Elizegi has told reporters that Tottenham striker Fernando Llorente is an option for the club when the Spaniard’s contract expires this summer.

Fernando Llorente, 34, has had an underwhelming time with Tottenham over the past two seasons. He joined Spurs from Swansea City in the summer of 2017 and has made 54 appearances since then in all competitions, scoring just 12 goals for the club.

But since arriving in north London, the giant Spaniard has been a back-up option to Harry Kane and as a result, Llorente has found opportunities very tough to come by.

The 34-year-old, however, has netted some vital goals for Tottenham and been a productive striker in recent weeks but as Kane has returned from an ankle injury, he could again find himself on the periphery.

Llorente’s contract expires this summer and a move back to Spain to join his former club Athletic Bilbao might just be ideal to revive his fading career. As far as Tottenham are concerned, Pochettino can definitely find a better back-up option for Kane by letting go of Llorente.

That being said, here are two Llorente replacements Spurs should consider when the transfer window re-opens.

1. Maxi Gomez (Celta Vigo)

Maxi Gomez scored a sensational 17 goals in La Liga last season, his first in European football. But with Celta Vigo in the relegation zone, Gomez has netted just once in his last 11.

If Celta end up getting relegated, Tottenham could find it easy to prise the Uruguayan away from La Liga to north London. The 22-year-old has been one of the few shining lights in a tough season for the Spanish side.

Gomez is a powerful, quick and athletic centre-forward, who excels with his link-up play and movement in the final third. The Uruguayan is also a clinical finisher in front of goal, whilst being aerially efficient in the box.

He has a lot of potential and if Pochettino can convince Gomez to join Tottenham, the north London outfit would get a top replacement for Llorente.

2. Borja Iglesias (Espanyol)

Borja Iglesias has taken La Liga like a duck to water after banging 22 goals in the Spanish second-tier with Real Zaragoza last season. He has been in impressive form for Espanyol in the La Liga, scoring 11 goals thus far.

Given his goal-scoring exploits, Tottenham should definitely consider moving for Iglesias as he could be a great alternative option to their mercurial Kane. Iglesias is a powerful centre-forward, who’ll add a different dimension to Tottenham’s attack with his hold-up play and aerial presence in the box.

Read more Tottenham news, click here: Tottenham latest news

To convince Espanyol to sell their prized asset after just one season, Tottenham have to spend really big in the summer.

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Crystal Palace

Crystal Palace reigniting interest in this towering 26-year-old Frenchman would solve Hodgson’s defensive woes



Crystal Palace Opinion: Why Christopher Jullien will be a good fit for Palace?

Back in June 2018, a report from the Sun claimed Crystal Palace were one of the few Premier League clubs that showed an interest in signing Toulouse defender Christopher Jullien.

The Frenchman, 26, impressed last season with his defensive displays and helped Toulouse retain their Ligue 1 status. Toulouse lost their skipper and defensive rock Issa Diop to West Ham last summer but Christopher Jullien stayed put at the club.

And he has managed to impress this season as well which should prompt Crystal Palace to rekindle their interest in the towering defender and sign him in the summer transfer window.

Crystal Palace have been hugely inconsistent this season, with Roy Hodgson’s side failing to score goals consistently. Irrespective of where they finish this season, the Eagles will have to make sure they address their problems.

Apart from bringing in a bonafide goal-scorer, Hodgson needs to tighten his backline with the addition of a quality centre-half.

James Tomkins and Mamadou Sakho may have forged a strong partnership at the back but that hasn’t stopped the team from conceding 41 goals. Scott Dann returned this year from cruciate ligament injury that had kept him out for nearly 15 months. But Dann turned 32 last month and is past his prime, although he can be a very good squad player for the Eagles.

But Palace need a centre-half to add quality the squad, whilst bringing competition to Sakho and Tomkins. And the solution to Hodgson’s problems could be Christopher Jullien, who has all the attributes to flourish in the Premier League.

Standing at 6ft 5in tall, Jullien is a strong, physical and aerially dominant defender who has impressed in Ligue 1 with his all-action defending.

The Frenchman is an aerial threat in both penalty areas and is an asset for the team when it comes to attacking the set-pieces. He can also play the ball out from the back with ease and can pick a 30-yard pass as well.

The 26-year-old is fantastic at breaking up the play and his willingness to put his body on the line fearlessly would be loved by the Palace fans.

Jullien has decent pace despite possessing such a towering frame and his unorthodox and relentless style of defending combined with shrewd reading of the game and tackling skills would make him such an inspired addition for the Eagles backline.

Read more Crystal Palace news, click here – Crystal Palace latest news

Not to forget, the former Auxerre and Dijon man is also a leader and commands the box well. Palace lack real leadership at the back, meaning Jullien could be a standout option for Hodgson.


Given the leaky and unreliable backline, Crystal Palace need a commanding and smart centre-half, which is exactly what Christopher Jullien is. At 26, he is entering the prime years of his career and under the guidance of Hodgson, the lanky Frenchman can take his game to the next level.

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Rangers signing this 31-goal hitman on a free in the summer would be one of the best bargain deals for the club



Rangers Opinion: Why the Gers should snap up Lawrence Shankland?

According to a report from Wales Online, Ayr United hit-man Lawrence Shankland has rejected a big-money move to the Belgian second-tier.

Belgian outfit Saint Gilloise offered the 23-year-old a deal that would have trebled his wages but he has turned down a switch to the European nation.

Lawrence Shankland is one of the hottest properties in Scotland, having notched an eye-watering 31 goals in 33 appearances for Ayr United in the Scottish Championship thus far this season.

And that form hasn’t gone unnoticed, with the likes of Rangers, Celtic, Hull City, Sunderland and Swansea City all showing interest in the striker, adds the report.

The 23-year-old is out of contract at the end of the season, however, and it gives a massive chance for all the aforementioned clubs to try their luck of landing the striker on a Bosman transfer this summer.

That being said, Rangers should do everything possible to get their icy hands on Shankland ahead of the 2019/20 campaign.

Rangers have another big summer on the horizon as they try and bridge the gap in Glasgow after failing 10 points behind arch-rivals Celtic before the international break.

Steven Gerrard has brought in 19 new faces so far since taking the reins at Ibrox and with clear gulf between his team and Celtic still existing, the Rangers chief could again overhaul his squad in the summer.

The Gers have arguably the best striker in the Premiership in Alfredo Morelos, who has extended his deal at Ibrox until 2023. He has netted 28 goals in all competitions this season which has left the Gers being over-reliant on him on a number of times.

And that has cost the Ibrox-based outfit a lot of points this season; however, Gerrard has hinted he’ll address the problem at the “right time”.

If we are to go by the Gerrard’s words, the Rangers manager wants a new no.9 to ease the team’s over-dependency on Morelos. Ayr’s Lawrence Shankland would be a brilliant fit for the Gers, making him the perfect player to complement Morelos up front.

Shankland, formerly of Aberdeen, has good pace and technique to hold up the ball and bring his teammates into the game. The Scotsman is a lethal finisher in the box as he is strong on both the feet that help him bury chances in the back of the net.

Read more Rangers news, click here: Rangers latest news

The natural-born goal-scorer has the potential to make step up in the Scottish Premiership after previously failing to dazzle in Aberdeen colours.


Given his goal-scoring exploits, age and the interest in the player, Gerrard should prioritise plucking Shankland away when his contract at Ayr expires. On a free transfer, the 23-year-old’s addition would be one of the biggest bargains in Rangers’ history.

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