Steven Gerrard has told Rangers’s official website that Jamie Murphy could make a return to the first-team sooner than previously expected with Ryan Kent and Jordan Jones both injured.
Murphy has not played for the Gers’s first-team since last August after sustaining a cruciate injury that kept him out for the rest of the campaign. He has, so far, only featured for the reserves this term.
But with Jones injuring himself in the Old Firm game before the international break, and Kent coming off during the first-half of his second debut for the club, Gerrard hinted that Murphy could soon be back in the fold.
“It also might make us push Jamie Murphy forward a bit quicker to give us another option as we will be without Jordan Jones for probably another three to four weeks and it looks like Ryan is going to be a couple of weeks as well, so we might have to push Jamie a bit quicker,” he told the club’s official website while discussing the current state of his squad.
“I think he is ready to be part of the 18, but I’m not sure he will be ready to go in and start games in succession.
“He is certainly training very well, and I think in the last week to 10 days, you can see some of his strength coming back, so he is certainly ready to contribute, but I will have to manage his minutes that suit him and be patient with him as well.”
It is interesting that Gerrard has made this decision on Murphy. In comments reported by the Daily Record, he suggested that the £1 million signing was likely to be loaned out while the window was open. He suggested that the winger was several months away from being ready to be at the level he had been at before his injury.
Of course, Murphy would ultimately stay at Ibrox. And the injuries to his teammates appear to have played a key role in Gerrard changing his plans.
But this could be a fantastic opportunity for the former Brighton man to prove a point. He was an excellent loan signing, but the Ibrox faithful would be forgiven for having their doubts about his future.
It is not going to be easy to get back in the team, and even more difficult to hold onto a spot. But with Kent and Jones to come back, and the likes of Glenn Middleton and Jake Hastie set to return from loans in the future, it is a chance that Murphy arguably cannot afford to pass up.