By Saikat Mandal

29th Apr, 2022 | 11:10am

Rangers striker Cedric Itten opens up on illness battle

Rangers striker Cedric Itten has opened up about why he has not been playing for the Gers since returning on loan. 

The Swiss forward joined Bundesliga side Greuther Furth on loan last summer under Steven Gerrard but he was recalled by Giovanni van Bronckhorst in January. 

The Swiss forward says his season has been derailed by a mystery illness which has affected his ability to train properly. 

He also revealed that the Dutchman has told him that he would never have loaned him out if he had been in charge at the start of the season. 

“The whole illness thing really blew my mind. I wanted to eat, but I couldn’t, I only ate soup and lost a total of four kilos,” said Itten, as quoted by Daily Record.

“I didn’t know what kind of illness it was. Neither the Rangers ‘ club doctors nor my girlfriend’s father, who is also a doctor, could find an explanation.

“It’s possible it was the aftermath of a Covid infection – I previously tested positive, even though I’ve been vaccinated three times.

“I was then in quarantine for ten days, felt good again, was back in fitness training before it knocked me out again.

“It’s been a difficult time mainly because the training deficit at this point in the season means it is almost impossible to catch up, but I hope to play now.

“The manager, Giovanni van Bronckhorst, told me that he would never have loaned me out if he had been in charge at the beginning of the season.”

Future?

Itten has hardly played since returning to Ibrox in January, and that led to many wild suggestions about his future. 

Ally McCoist has been left stunned [Sky Sports] as to why Itten was not given chance especially after losing Kemar Roofe through injury. 

There have been suggestions that Van Bronckhorst probably doesn’t find him good enough and that his future is under big doubt [Daily Record]

However, based on what Itten has said, it looks like the club is cautious with his fitness, and that Van Bronckhorst doesn’t want to rush him into the side. 

He was assured by the Dutchman that he wouldn’t have sent him on loan, which shows the striker is still in the first-team plans of the Gers boss. 

It will be interesting to see if Itten gets a chance to face RB Leipzig tonight in the Europa League clash on Thursday in Germany. He could be used from the bench though, provided he remains fit.

In other Rangers news, the club are “not convinced” by a key first-team player and an early termination of his contract is extremely likely.