By Dan Carter

18th Sep, 2023 | 9:40am

Ben Davies addresses Rangers exit speculation as defender never planned to leave Ibrox

Ben Davies has said that he had no plan to leave Rangers this summer, despite a lot of speculation surrounding his future throughout the transfer window.

The defender was a target for Stoke City and the Potters were said to have made a late bid to take the 28-year-old on loan [Heart and Hand podcast, 1 September] but Michael Beale wanted to keep the defender in Glasgow.

Having made his first start of the season in the Light Blues’ 2-0 win over St Johnstone on Saturday (16 September) the former Liverpool defender revealed that he never had any interest in leaving Ibrox during the transfer window.

As quoted by the Daily Record (18 September), he said: “I’m not sure what was said about me but as far as I was concerned I was a Rangers player and I wasn’t looking to move. My priority over the summer was getting fit and getting back in the team.

“The manager has shown a lot of faith in me since he’s been here. It’s time I repaid that and put some good performances in. I back the manager. I’ve got 100 per cent faith in him that we can have a good season this year. There’s a long way to go and he just needs people like me and others to put in strong performances for him.”

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What was clear from what Davies said following Saturday’s win, was just how eager he is to not only establish himself at Ibrox but also to learn and develop as a defender to become a crucial part of Beale’s side moving forward.

The 28-year-old’s first season at Ibrox was a relatively indifferent one, but when he’s at his best he has shown he can be one of the best defenders in the division let alone at Rangers. The next step is making sure he reaches that level every week.

What’s refreshing is the fact he has been so open about knowing the areas he has to improve in while also recognising that he does have weaknesses. If he can maintain his fitness and build upon the impressive display against the Saints, everyone will be left wondering where the talk of him leaving this summer came from.

For Beale to keep his job at Ibrox he is going to need players who are committed to being successes at Rangers, who are willing to fight for his side and three points. It is clear Davies is one of those players, no matter how much speculation there was around his future.

In other Rangers news, one BBC Sport pundit was left stunned by Danilo’s ‘horrendous’ injury against St Johnstone