Steven Gerrard’s first stint as a manager seems to have made him a busy man. The former UCL winner with Liverpool is desperate to take Rangers closer to arch-rivals Celtic in the race to the Scottish league title and has been busy, adding some exciting names to the squad at Ibrox this summer.
He has already added up to six new faces to the side from the previous season but does not seem totally convinced with the options at his disposal at the moment. So he continues to be linked with a few names from around Europe and the latest player added to that list is Lassana Coulibaly.
Born and brought up in Mali, Coulibaly started his youth career with Bastia, where he spent a couple of seasons, before moving to Ligue 1 with Angers. He made an immediate impact on the French league, scoring a goal and picking up two assists in just eight league starts all season.
A central midfielder, who loves to dictate the game with the ball at his feet, the 22-year old is adept at making interceptions in the middle of the park, to set his side on that attack. He has decent technique and is quick to find teammates in space, in the final third. He is effective in build-up play and rarely loses the ball and though does not have too much skill, is smart with his hold up play.
He is also effective when his side is under pressure, dropping deep and adding numbers to the backline. He has already broken into the Mali national side, where he has nine international caps and at just 22, is certainly an established star at the highest stage.
Reports suggest that Gerrard is impressed with his maturity and consistency and is desperate to bring him to Glasgow. However, Coulibaly needs a work permit to move to Scotland, which might be a hindrance in this deal.
The new manager at Ibrox has so far been busy adding youngsters to the side, to give the squad a new look. He has already signed players with different playing styles, making them stronger and Coulibaly fits into this system pretty well.
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He has the potential to make an immediate impact on the first team next season and at his age, will only get better. And playing under Gerrard, one of the best midfielders in the game might be enough to lure him to the UK. But Coulibaly and his work permit could turn out to be a headache for the Scottish giants. Do you think Rangers can land the Mali international this summer?