We’re delighted to welcome former Rangers manager Alex McLeish as our exclusive columnist. Each week he’ll be giving his views on the biggest talking points at Ibrox…
Alex McLeish has said that he’s heard “really good things” about 18y/o Rangers winger Kai Kennedy but that the player has to be patient.
Rangers are reportedly working on a new contract for Kennedy, currently on loan at Inverness.
That news was reported by Glasgow Live, with the 18-year-old starting the last three games in the Championship.
It represents a U-turn after it looked like the player – who has been courted by Manchester City, Roma and Bayern Munich – would leave at the end of the season in a disagreement over playing time.
McLeish has said that it’s hard to tell some youngsters they can’t play. He said if Kennedy was to leave then Rangers would want to get a “massive fee” for him.
Talking exclusively to Ibrox News McLeish said, “I don’t know the level Kai’s at but I’ve heard really good things about him.
“If he’s at the level of Billy Gilmour and he goes then they want to be getting a massive fee. He’s still in contract until the summer so there’s still a chance he’ll sign a new deal.
“When it comes to playing time, you try to stop a youngster who’s really confident in himself and his peers who really believe in him as well.
“Sometimes they do feel ready but clearly the best people to judge are the coaches like Steven [Gerrard].
“I’m sure he would have been in first-team training and Steven Gerrard would have had a close look at him. I’m sure he’ll be very well aware of where the lad is in terms of level.
“But kids don’t want to be stopped. You’ve got Mason Greenwood at Man United who’s still a teenager and he wants to play every week.
“There’s nothing wrong with that but sometimes you’ve got to hold your horses. There are many, many examples of paying a kid too much and they’re burned out by their 20s or pick up injuries.”
In other Rangers news, Kieran Maguire: Rangers losing less money day-to-day than Celtic – huge windfall awaits