Rangers manager Steven Gerrard is excited about what Steven Davis and Jermain Defoe can offer the club after watching them up close during the Gers’ winter training camp in Tenerife.
Nobody really needs convincing that the duo are going to be a big hit at Ibrox over the coming months, but there are question marks about getting their match fitness up to scratch ahead of some crucial fixtures in January and February.
The manager is so far delighted with their progress after they flew out to join up and train with their new teammates in Tenerife.
As quoted by the official website, Gerrard said:
They have got unbelievable quality on the football pitch. We knew that was not going to be a worry for us and that they are two good people and two good professionals. The key thing for us is for them to get used to their teammates, used to the patterns of play and how we want to play and get them up to speed that way.
The important thing is for us to build them up physically as well as they are not super match fit because they have not played many games. They are fit and they are able to train, but we want to get them up to speed with the rest of the group because the rest of this group are very fit, as we’ve showed that for six months. It’s been one of our strengths.
Rangers’ first match after the winter break comes against Cowdenbeath this Friday, which could be a perfect chance to give game time to both players without the pressure of an especially difficult match.
Difficult fixtures are on the horizon immediately after that, with a trip to Kilmarnock on the schedule next Wednesday that could have a big say in the title race.
We need Defoe and Davis ready for matches like that, so it’s pleasing to hear that Gerrard has been immediately impressed with what he’s seen in training.