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‘JON DESERVES A BREAK,’ McALLISTER

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RANGERS boss Gary McAllister insists Jon Flanagan deserves a second chance as the Ibrox side close in on the defender.

The full-back pleaded guilty to assaulting his girlfriend earlier this year and was sentenced to 40 hours of unpaid work and a 12-month community order.

Flanagan was released by Liverpool and McAllister admitted the 25-year-old’s behaviour was unacceptable, but doesn’t believe it should mean the end of his career and he is set to become Steven Gerrard’s seventh signing.

The player, who spent the second half of the season on loan at Bolton, is due to join the Ibrox club in their pre-season training camp in Spain and McAllister said: “It was unacceptable, most definitely.

“I have a little bit of an in because I worked at Liverpool, but it was unacceptable and a really poor decision that he made in that episode.

“But he deserves a second chance. He showed remorse, he put his hand up and has taken his punishment. He wants to get on with his life and his football life.”

McAllister added: “I haven’t worked with him directly, but I know him from my time at Liverpool.

“He is a great lad, a very approachable man, extremely hard working. He’s tough, unassuming, he is an old school full-back who can play either side, he can play two in a back four, three of a back five, a back three, so he is versatile.

“But the big thing is that we know him, we know his character and we think he can deal with playing in front of a 50,000 crowd.”

The Gers No.2 also insisted it won’t signal a move for current right-back James Tavernier, linked with Swansea and Crystal Palace, if they get the deal over the line.

He added: “In this period where Rangers have taken a bit of criticism, James has been one of the stand-out players and he is going to be key for us.”

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Acclaimed author Alex Gordon wrote the biography of Scotland international legend Denis Law, entitled 'King and Country'. He is a former columnist with World Soccer magazine and Scottish correspondent of respected European journal L'Equipe.

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