By George Overhill

21st Jan, 2023 | 2:54pm

Chris Sutton heaps praise on Celtic man Liel Abada and claims Rangers star Ryan Kent has something missing

Liel Abada has been held up by Chris Sutton as a glowing example of what he thinks Rangers star Ryan Kent should be at Ibrox.

The English Gers winger is without doubt one of the most important attacking forces in Michael Beale’s squad, but with his contract currently running out in the summer he could soon be gone.

Despite a resurgence since the manager replaced Giovanni van Bronckhorst, Kent’s numbers are frequently put under the spotlight to suggest he doesn’t have the impact that his talent suggests, and Sutton has heaped praise on Israel international Abada for his goalscoring in less game time while highlighting the Light Blues man’s inferior output.

In his Daily Record column on Saturday morning (21 January) “Abada has hit 10 but he’s only actually started 13 games out of 30 this season. You look at the huge amount said and written about Ryan Kent across the city at Rangers.

“Abada has scored seven more goals this season and created a similar amount as well – yet he’s been on the pitch half the time.

“That’s the funny thing with the player. He’s involved most weeks in some capacity.”

Horses for courses

Of course Rangers would like Kent to score and assist more, but he arguably comes under greater scrutiny than he should because there haven’t been too many other players to pick up the slack in recent months.

Fashion Sakala has come into his own since Beale took over but with Ianis Hagi out long term the responsibility has largely fallen on Kent’s shoulders to provide attacking impetus aside from the central striker.

Celtic have got plenty of goals from supporting players and that is probably a large reason why they are nine points clear at the top.

With Todd Cantwell now on the way in, and Malik Tillman developing, there will be a hope around Ibrox that a supporting cast of attackers can provide a strong back drop to the front man going forward.

If Kent is to leave at the end of the season it will certainly be needed, since he has been crucial to the club even if he has flattered to deceive at times.

Sakala looks to be the top candidate to pick up the slack for now, but the rest of the squad needs to produce more for Rangers to close the gap to their Old Firm rivals.

In other Rangers news, the club have burst into action after the Cantwell deal with another medical already sorted to continue with recruitment.