Rangers have confirmed that they have secured the future of highly-rated young defender Leon King. King signed his first professional contract, and he will stay at Rangers until 2022. At just 16, King was able to break through into the matchday squad for the Scottish Cup fourth-round tie against Stranraer this season.
Getting King on a contract is undoubtedly a significant achievement for the Rangers hierarchy as the young defender was attracting interest from the likes of Chelsea and Manchester City. Sporting Director Ross Wilson indicated that King showed a desire to develop his career at Ibrox.
Ross Wilson On King
Wilson said, “I am delighted we have an agreement with Leon King. Leon has been a priority for us, and we are excited about his potential. He has been demonstrating that potential both for Rangers and Scotland and we are excited about his future. As a Rangers fan, he has a huge desire to develop his career at Rangers and is impressing the staff daily with his application and attitude.”
With two Premier League heavyweights interested in him, there is no doubting his talent. At just 15, King was part of the u-18 Rangers side which won the league title. The youngster has also represented Scotland at the u-17 level.
It remains to be seen now when King would be able to make a breakthrough in the senior team. Rangers are going through a bad time defensively, and if the title race is beyond them with 3-4 games to go (which seems likely), then someone like King can be tried out in some of the Premiership games.
However, he is still 16, so one might expect Gerrard and Co to protect him for now. His current contract isn’t a long one as he has only committed his future until 2022. It would be interesting to see whether he would be able to break into the senior team lineup by then.
How Can Rangers Get Him To Stay Further?
The Glaswegian giants had lost the services of Billy Gilmour not too long ago, and he has now emerged as an exciting prospect for Chelsea. Rangers will hope that they can oversee the development of King for a few more years.
It cannot be ignored that he might move on to bigger and better things in the future, but the Rangers hierarchy should look to keep him as long as they can. If King can get first-team opportunities in the next odd year or so then, we think that there will be a possibility of the teenager extending his deal further.
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