Glasgow Rangers manager Steven Gerrard has waxed lyrical about Ibrox winger Brandon Barker ahead of the start of the 2020-21 Scottish Premiership campaign.
The 23-year-old moved to Rangers from Manchester City last summer but seldom featured for the Light Blues in his maiden campaign.
Barker made 12 competitive appearances for Gerrard’s side and netted just once, in the 3-1 Scottish Premiership win over Livingston back in September.
However, the former England Under-20 international has caught the eye this summer thanks to his displays in pre-season.
Against Motherwell, Barker forced Ricki Lamie to turn the ball into his own net after a surging run into the visitors’ penalty box.
Now, with the Scottish Premiership campaign about to get under way, Gerrard praised Barker for his good work over the past month.
“During pre-season, we have been very considerate,” the Gers boss said at his press conference ahead of Saturday’s trip to Aberdeen.
“Joe Aribo has been stunning, defensively we have looked solid and looked threatening going forward. Brandon Barker was looking great and a real threat during these matches also.”
Barker’s first season at Rangers wasn’t particularly fruitful but he has improved massively in pre-season and, with Gerrard giving him a lifeline in terms of first-team opportunities, it bodes well for both player and club.
Gers legend Barry Ferguson also backed Barker for more game time this season, telling the Daily Record: “Brandon Barker has impressed me so far and along with Jamie Murphy and Jordan Jones, he must be ready to contribute.”
While it is just pre-season, the opportunity for Barker to step up and potentially play a role in a huge season for Rangers is definitely there.