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GERRARD PRAISES SPARK KENT

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STEVEN GERRARD has admitted he expects renewed interest in winger Ryan Kent – but insists he is in no rush to quit Rangers.

Premier League new boys Leeds United have already had a bid of around £10million rejected for the former Liverpool prospect.

Gerrard, speaking to Sky Sports News, said: “He’s really happy and settled here.

“He’s had a full pre-season under his belt and his red card against Lyon aside, he’s been fantastic to watch and work with.

“Ryan is on a very good contract. He has remained professional, his application has been top-class every day since we returned.

“He hasn’t let any interest affect him. He’s used it as a compliment that people are enjoying what they’re seeing in terms of his form. He’s scoring goals and looking very dangerous.

“He’s playing with freedom. Yes, he’s started from his normal left position, but I think he’s really taking it to opposition teams and is trying to cause as much damage as he can from different areas.

“We’ve given him that freedom and license to go and express himself. We hope that Ryan remains in the place he’s in. He’s happy, settled and is enjoying his football.

“He is going to get more interest, we’re going to get more phone calls over Ryan Kent because he’s a fantastic player.”

SMILES BETTER…Ryan Kent (second left) and his Gers team-mates celebrate a goal against St Mirren last month.

Gerrard, who is preparing his troops for the visit of Dundee United tomorrow, reported there had been no developments on transfers in and out of Ibrox – and that includes Alfredo Morelos, who has sat out the last two matches after being accused of lacking focus by his manager.

The gaffer remarked: “Alfredo has had only one day off since Hamilton. He’s come in and trained alone with the fitness coach.

“That is good to see. He did that off his own back. That tells me he is focused, that he wants to get himself ready for the games coming up. He certainly looks better on the eye and looks sharper, so he’s available for tomorrow.”

Midfielder Joe Aribo, who has a troublesome ankle problem, faces a lengthy spell on the sidelines

He was initially expected to sit out just a week, but having already missed most of the last month, Aribo is set for an even lengthier absence after being assessed by a specialist.

Gerrard added: “”There was a chance he might have needed surgery, but, thankfully, he doesn’t and we might be able to get him back in four weeks’ time. So, it’s actually a positive situation as it could have been a lot worse.

“Joe will be missed as he’s such a fantastic talent. He’s a creator and scorer of goals for us, so you will always miss that kind of player.

“But the responsibility and the pressure is on the squad as a whole. The responsibility is on all the forward players to create and score and find answers when opponents set us challenges.

“I don’t think the pressure goes onto just one other individual.”

There is further injury frustration with the news keeper Allan McGregor needs a scan after jarring his knee in training this week, but Borna Barisic should overcome the effects of the dead-leg he sustained on Croatia duty and face the Tannadice outfit.

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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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