Ibrox View: Solid display proves that Mayo deserves chance to replace injured Rangers ace Katic
Rangers have a whole host of promising young talent coming through the ranks right now.
From Jamie Barjonas to Nathan Patterson to Kai Kennedy, there are plenty of starlets who look like they have what it takes to make the step up to regular first team football in the near future.
And according to ex-academy coach Peter Lovenkrands, another youngster to watch out for is Lewis Mayo.
Judging by his outing against Lyon last week, Lovenkrands is absolutely right about the 20-year-old too.
The youngster only played 18 minutes, but in that time he barely put a foot wrong.
Mayo completed two out of his three attempted passes, had a duel success rate of 100%, an aerial duel success rate of 100%, made three ball recoveries, and two interceptions, as per Wyscout.
Any time that a player is getting 100% in any area of his game, you have to sit up and take notice.
And for a club who were recently rocked by the injury picked up by Nikola Katic, his display must have been a source of some relief.
All four of the duels that Mayo won were in his own box, suggesting that he has a good eye for eradicating danger when it matters most.
In the passage of play above, for instance, the defender wins two vital headers in a row in a matter of seconds.
The first is pictured above, and you can see that Mayo gets up well to win a ball that has to be cut out to prevent a clear goalscoring opportunity.
Rather than resting on his laurels in that situation, however, the youngster gets straight back into position and is alive to the second threat.
The second header actually ends up being better than the first.
His vertical leap is hugely impressive, and he routinely bullies player several years his senior.
Again, he is the last man, and if he gets that header wrong, there are two strikers waiting to pounce.
It’s superb defensive play, pure and simple.
Of course, 18 minutes isn’t enough time to get the proper measure of a young player, but we saw more than enough here to suggest that Mayo deserves the chance to prove himself as a potential replacement for the injured Katic.
In other Rangers news, Ibrox View: Rangers could get 20/21 boost after transfer reports on rival striker.