Former Rangers striker Kyle Lafferty believes deadline day signing Ryan Kent could reach the levels of Eden Hazard.
Kent completed a £7m move to Ibrox from Liverpool on Monday having spent last season on loan in Glasgow.
Could Kent reach Hazard’s heights? Five things to know…
- Ryan Kent spent the 2018/19 season on loan with Rangers, scoring six goals and registering nine assists.
- His exploits out wide earned him a place in the PFA Scotland Team of the Year.
- He also won Rangers’ and the PFA’s Young Player of the Year accolades.
- Jurgen Klopp blocked sending Kent out on loan again earlier this summer and he featured heavily in pre-season.
- However, Rangers have now landed their man and Lafferty has earmarked him for Galactico heights.
Such was his impact during his season-long sojourn with the Teddy Bears that the 22-year-old clinched the club’s Young Player of the Year gong, as well as being named in the PFA Scotland Team of the Year.
And Lafferty, who spent the previous campaign in Steven Gerrard’s squad alongside the ex-Liverpool winger, believes his former colleague has all the requisite attributes to emulate Hazard.
He said: “After one game last season I spoke to Ryan in the showers. People were raving about Eden Hazard and his ability to know what he’s going to do before the ball comes to him.
“I said to Kenty, ‘Mate, you could be as good as him, if not better.’
“He has everything in his locker. He could probably add a few more goals but the chances he creates and winning games is what he does. I’m excited already to see him play.
“It’s crazy to think he’s back. This is the biggest and most significant signing of the season.”
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Kent in Dybala and Belotti bracket
Lafferty’s glowing appraisal didn’t stop at one day reaching the heights of Real Madrid’s new world class forward. He also placed Kent alongside former Palermo teammates Andrea Belotti and Paulo Dybala.
He added: “Ryan’s in the top three of the best I’ve played with and I’ve had Dybala and Belotti as team-mates. I’m more than happy to say that as he provides something special.
“It’s about how he takes the ball, how he runs with it and I’ve seen him absolutely destroy defenders. He can do that even with three or four defenders around him.
“Ryan’s a match-winner and to have him in your team with a good foundation around him is a massive statement for Rangers. After the disappointment of losing the Old Firm game on Sunday, this news will get everyone back on board from that downer.
“It’s the ideal lift for all of the supporters. Kenty is the one player who’ll get everyone out of their seats again. It’s a huge tonic. If there is any player who’s going to help Rangers to land 55 then it’s him.”