With Brighton continually being linked with players, it is no surprise that the latest star rumoured to join the Seagulls is Rangers captain, James Tavernier. Tavernier is a right-back, who joined Rangers back in 2015 and has made 116 appearances and scored 22 goals.
In the first six games of this season, Tavernier has already scored six goals in 18 games, including a goal in the Europa League against SK Rapid Wien in a 3-1 win. Tavernier has been given the honour of captaining Rangers by the manager Steven Gerrard, which shows how vital member he is to the Gers.
Does Brighton need Tavernier?
The first question to ask is, does Brighton need Tavernier? The honest answer at the moment is a firm NO as they already have three or four players that can play right back (Martin Montoya, Bruno, Ezequiel Schelotto and Bernardo).
Montoya was brought in on transfer deadline day from Valencia and has looked a good buy. He is very attacking and has the Spanish flair, plus the experience of winning some major trophies during his time at Barcelona. Then you have captain Bruno, who like Montoya has done well this season. Bruno played right back in the win over West Ham United with Montoya injured and at the age of 38 proved he can still cut it in the top flight.
Brighton’s backup for Montoya and Bruno is Schelotto, who last season had the shirt for most of the season after impressing when joining previous summer. However, towards the end of the season, Schelotto struggled, and with Bruno and Montoya doing well, he has found game time extremely limited.
Finally, summer signing Bernardo can play right back. The Brazilian started a majority of the pre-season games and impressed enough to start Brighton’s Premier League opener against Watford. However, Bernardo struggled and lost his place to Gaetan Bong who has been at left back since and done well.
So Tavernier would struggle to start with so much competition and to be honest I’m not sure if he’s quite as good as the likes of Montoya and Bruno, as the Scottish Premier League is much different to the Premier League.
Would Rangers be looking to let go of Tavernier?
The answer straight away would be no and manager Gerrard is pretty clear about Tavernier and him leaving the club.
Gerrard (above) had this to say: “I know the CEO at Brighton very well. I used to work alongside him at the FA. He’s got my number and he knows where I am.
“But he best go to the owners and ask for an awful lot of money if he wants James Tavernier.
‘That goes for any CEO, any owner, any club that wants my captain. They best go to the bank and get an awful lot of money out – or he’s not going.
‘I would be surprised if teams don’t come (for Tavernier) because he’s been absolutely fabulous for me.
‘Every player has their price but if the price is not right then he does not go anywhere. He stays as my captain.”
It is quite clear that Gerrard would not be willing to part with Tavernier and why would he? Tavernier has played superbly well for Rangers this season both in the SPL and the Europa League.
Overall, Tavernier to Brighton will not happen due to Brighton having enough options at full-back and the Seagulls should not be not willing to spend an extortionate amount on one player. Then you have Rangers who would not be willing to let him go and if they did it would have to be a huge fee.