Why Rangers should push hard for Jacob Murphy in January
The 25-year-old had been linked with a move to Ibrox throughout the summer (Mail Sport h/t Daily Record), but Murphy eventually ended up staying put at Newcastle after returning from his loan spell at Sheffield Wednesday in the Championship last season.
Murphy has started and played the full 90 minutes in Newcastle’s last two Premier League fixtures against Wolves and Everton, with manager Steve Bruce giving him an opportunity to rejuvenate his career at St. James’ park.
However, his current deal expires in 2021 and as per the report, Gerrard is keeping a close eye on Murphy’s contract talks at Newcastle. The Magpies are determined not to lose him for free, having paid a hefty £12million to secure his services from Norwich City in 2017.
Murphy would add more quality to Rangers’ attack
Steven Gerrard signed Kemar Roofe and Cedric Itten in the summer window to compete with star man Alfredo Morelos and the ageing Jermain Defoe for a spot in front of goal. While Roofe has already hit the ground running with some spectacular goals, Itten has evoked some criticism for struggling to get to grips with Scottish football.
However, it is worth noting that Itten is not a natural wide player by any means even though he has been utilised on the flanks by Gerrard at times. Ianis Hagi and Ryan Kent remain the undisputed starters out wide but the Gers presently lack quality alternatives to take the pressure off their shoulders.
The likes of Brandon Barker, Greg Stewart, and Jordan Jones have been quite underwhelming, to say the least, sharing just 6 goals among them in more than 65 appearances since the start of last season. Hence, it goes without saying that Rangers can certainly do with a better wide attacker to ensure quality competition for places.
Jacob Murphy has struggled to make a real impression in the Premier League but he certainly ticks the box as a proven performer in the English second-tier. Considering the obvious drop in quality and intensity north of the border, it is a no-brainer that the 25-year-old would be a massive asset to Rangers’ attack in the Scottish Premiership.
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Jacob Murphy has the versatility to operate on either side of the pitch, thus potentially making him a suitable alternative to both Kent and Hagi at Ibrox. Rangers should ideally look to negotiate a pre-contract agreement in January that would see him join Gerrard’s ranks ahead of the 2021-22 campaign.
The 25-year-old still has his best years ahead of him and is only expected to get better with time. That coupled with his impressive track record in the EFL Championship, would make him an almighty coup for Rangers on a free transfer.