By George Overhill

24th May, 2023 | 11:40am

Todd Cantwell subject of surprise Chris Sutton admission as Rangers ace is praised after Ally McCoist intervention

Chris Sutton’s latest complaint against Todd Cantwell following the Rangers victory over Hibs was squashed by Ally McCoist on Tuesday, before the former Celtic man was backed into praising the Ibrox ace.

The one-time Norwich forward has made a habit of focusing on his fellow ex-Carrow Road charge, and after attempting to criticise the midfielder for going down too easily to win the free kick for James Tavernier’s opener at Easter Road admitted he was “delighted” to see Cantwell doing well in Scotland.

The 25-year-old scored the third in the 3-1 win, to make it three goals in as many games for the January signing.

Speaking on Scottish Football Extra on BT Sport (23 May) Sutton started: “Went down a bit easily for the free kick. He’s got to watch that hasn’t he, going down easily? Referees will eventually cotton on to that.”

McCoist wasn’t interested in the suggestion, replying: “I’m going to tell you something, listen to me. That is a stonewall free kick. End of story… defender puts two hands across his chest, pulls him back, free kick, Tavernier, goal, end of.”

“Does he make a meal of things though some of the times?” Sutton continued.

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When Darrell Currie cut in to ask if the ex-Hoops striker was ever going to be positive about Cantwell he replied: “Genuinely, delighted for him that he has gone up and really performed well at Rangers. I did call it Darrell, I think you brought up the article I wrote about him a couple of seasons ago, there’s a player in there.

“And fair play to him, especially hitting the ground running. If you’re a Rangers fan, which I’m clearly not, you’re really excited about Todd Cantwell. Can he carry it on next season?”

A stunned Currie wanted to clarify that Sutton had said he was actually happy for the Light Blues ace to which he replied: “I’m happy for Todd that he’s performing.”

Major achievement

Finishing the season on a high, scoring in successive outings in wins over Aberdeen, Celtic and Hibs, and looking like a key man for the future under Michael Beale is all nice for Cantwell to achieve.

But clearly the real sign of his progress is finally getting some positive words out of Sutton, who even sounded fairly genuine, much to the surprise of Currie.

It is a nice sub-plot of the current Old Firm rivalry that one of the newest Rangers stars has a history at another of Sutton’s former clubs, and it will surely remain a feature going forward.

And Beale will be looking for a few more like him in the upcoming window assuming he can indeed keep up his current levels.

There is plenty of work to do over the summer if Rangers are going to make a real title race of it next season, but after a campaign that has left plenty to be desired there have been some positive signs in recent weeks and Cantwell is arguably the main one.

Plus, with Keiran Dowell on his way in from the Canaries as well the hope will be that the latest capture from Norwich can go some way to emulating the previous one.

In other Rangers news, the club are keen to sell a player who has an interested manager after him.