In a recent interview with Nigerian radio station Brila FM, Rangers midfield star Joe Aribo has opened up on the transfer speculations. The 25-year-old Super Eagles sensation reported late for international duties a month ago and his national team boss Gernot Rohr claimed that the delay was caused due to interest from south of the border.
“I am not focused on anything that is coming outside of football. I’m just focused on what’s going on with my club, and me and my club so that’s all I care about and that’s what I want to be doing.”
Aribo played it coy when asked about a potential Premier League move in the coming days. He also highlighted how Steven Gerrard is helping him understand different midfield roles and allowing freedom in the centre of the pitch since joining the Glasgow giants.
Despite playing a key role in Charlton’s promotion to the Championship back in 2019, the Nigerian rejected a new contract offer in order to ply his trade in Ibrox to grow his game under Steven Gerrard. He soon secured a starting status in the middle of the park and was also deployed down the right-hand side of a three-man attacking third.
Aribo has fired in 19 times and laid on 17 more in 106 appearances across competitions [stats via Transfermarket] and is now concentrating on improving the numbers even though he is mostly operating centrally from behind the frontline. Gerrard has bolstered the midfield significantly with an array of additions, but the ex-Addicks prodigy remains an assured starter, given his impact, versatility and creative spark.
Why Rangers Must Keep Hold Of Aribo Despite Ample Midfield Options In Their Ranks
Having said that, the Light Blues might struggle to retain him for long amid growing interest from abroad. Galatasaray were reportedly chasing the midfielder during the summer window and his potential egress in the forthcoming future would be a significant blow. The Gers have Steven Davis, Ryan Jack, John Lundstram, Juninho Bacuna, Nnamdi Ofoborh, Scott Arfield and Glen Kamara among the other midfield options, however, the directness, work rate and swift skills make him unique compared to the other names.
Meanwhile, Joe Rothwell has recently been linked to a Rangers move from Blackburn Rovers. His experience of the English game would introduce more stability deep down the pitch, but the artistry of Aribo can’t be compromised considering a dearth of goalscoring individuals from the three-man midfield.