Ryan Kent 'cannot be sold' if Rangers want to win silverware as suitors look on

Rangers manager Steven Gerrard has no doubts that Ryan Kent “can get to a different level” in his burgeoning career.

Ryan Kent produced a Man of the Match display for Rangers in their 4-0 Premiership win against Aberdeen at Ibrox on Sunday. (Photo by Craig Foy / SNS Group)

But Gerrard is equally certain that the Ibrox club must reject any fresh offers for the exciting winger in the January transfer window if they hope to build on their promising start to the season and become Scottish champions for the first time in a decade.

Rangers turned down a bid of around £10 million from Leeds United for Kent during the summer transfer window and also resisted any temptation to sell striker Alfredo Morelos to Lille, preferring to adopt a longer-term strategy towards their finances which saw saw them post a loss of £15.9 million in their recently published 2019-20 annual accounts.

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Gerrard is appreciative of his board’s support and insists their determination to hold onto Kent must be maintained throughout January when Leeds are expected to re-ignite their interest in the 24-year-old.

"It’s imperative that we keep Ryan at this football club if we are to stay true to what we all want, which is success,” said Gerrard.

Kent scored his sixth goal of the season in Rangers’ 4-0 win over Aberdeen at Ibrox on Sunday which increased their lead over Celtic at the top of the Premiership to 11 points. He has also provided seven assists in the campaign so far but Gerrard believes the former Liverpool player brings much more than just those headline numbers to the impressive manner in which Rangers have functioned since August.

"He can be as good as he wants to be,” added Gerrard. “Ryan has all the tools and the ability and talent to go on improving and get to a different level, without a doubt.

"People judge Ryan on goals and assists and, of course, we do to a certain degree as well. But we also judge him on his application on a daily basis. He’s in magnificent shape. He trains extremely hard in the gym and on the training pitch. He’s professional, selfless for the team.

"People often wonder why we have so much faith in Ryan and why he plays so many games. It’s because – in and out of possession – he totally gets what we’re trying to do in terms of our philosophy. He does a lot of work that people probably don’t notice in terms of blocking lines and being in the right place in regaining the ball.

"He’s aggressive as a winger, which is rare. I’m a huge fan of Ryan Kent. He can go again, for sure, to another level.”

Gerrard’s sentiments are echoed by Rangers captain James Tavernier who believes Kent is destined to become a top level English Premier League player.

“He’s showing incredible consistency right now and there’s nothing better I’d like to see than Ryan in the Premier League,” said Tavernier. “Hopefully that day will come - but after this season!

“He’s got everything as a winger, he can shoot with his left or right foot. As a defender, he’s so hard to defend against because he can come down either side. He’s scoring goals and adding numbers to his game. Hopefully that will continue.”

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