Ianis Hagi may be one start into his Rangers loan spell, but the young midfielder has already made a big impression on the Ibrox faithful.
Hagi looked bright after coming off the bench for his debut last week. And his cameo proved to be enough to prompt Steven Gerrard to put him in the starting lineup for Wednesday’s clash with Hibernian.
Understandably, the 21-year-old dominated many of the headlines. His superb finish in the 84th minute proved to be the winner as Rangers came from behind to seal a 2-1 victory.
But Gerrard made it clear after the game, in comments reported by the club’s official website, that his overall display must not be overlooked.
It appears that Rangers may have uncovered a potential gem.
Of course, Hagi needs to be wary of going the same way as the likes of Sean Goss and Lassana Coulibaly. Both men were outstanding during the early stages of their Ibrox loans in recent years.
But their declines were quite dramatic. And neither player seemed to leave the Gers with much of a decision to make when their loans were coming towards an end.
But Hagi has certainly made a fantastic start. And that is why one aspect of the deal Rangers agreed in January could prove to be a masterstroke.
The club confirmed on their official website when they announced Hagi’s arrival that they have an exclusive option to buy the youngster permanently in the summer.
According to Belgian outlet HLN, the option is worth around £4.2 million.
If Hagi’s performance and goal against Hibs is a sign of what is to come, then agreeing that clause already could prove inspired.
If he does build on Wednesday, Genk would have felt entitled to ask for a lot more. And it is likely that Rangers would not be the only side interested in a move this summer.
The Gers have ensured that they are in the driving seat to land Hagi at the end of the season.
It is early stages. But the club have had their first glimpse of why a £4.2 million move could prove a bargain.