Rangers’ long-term goalkeeping future would be sorted with the arrival of this 24-year-old star – opinion

Why Rangers should beat off competition for Cameron Dawson

According to the Sheffield Star, Scottish giants Rangers have been linked with a move for shot-stopper Cameron Dawson, who currently plies his trade with Sheffield Wednesday in the EFL Championship. 

The report adds that Championship trio Blackburn Rovers, Derby County and Preston North End are also interested in securing the services of the 24-year-old, who is out of contract at Hillsborough next summer. 

Born in Sheffield, Cameron Dawson rose through the youth ranks of the Owls and signed his first professional contract in 2013.

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Cameron Dawson has lost his No.1 role to Kieren Westwood at Hillsborough (Getty Images)

The homegrown star subsequently spent time on loan at Plymouth Argyle, Alfreton Town, Wycombe Wanderers and Chesterfield and it wasn’t until the previous campaign that he established himself in the first-team fold at Hillsborough. 

With former manager Jos Luhukay ostracising Kieren Westwood, Dawson was promoted to the No.1 role prior to the start of the 2018-19 campaign, and he retained his position as the first-choice between the sticks until December before the Dutchman was replaced by caretaker boss Lee Bullen at the helm of affairs. 

Dawson’s 26 league appearances last season yielded only 3 clean sheets, one of which was in a 0-0 draw against city rivals Sheffield United in November. The 24-year-old was the hero for the Owls in the local derby, as he kept out David McGoldrick’s penalty to earn a valuable point for his club. 

However, the homegrown star has largely played second-fiddle to veteran Westwood between the sticks since the departure of Luhukay, and things have hardly been any different for him this term under the stewardship of Garry Monk. 

Dawson has been afforded some playtime in the first quarter of the campaign due to injuries and suspension to Westwood, with the former England U-20 international recording 3 shut-outs from 6 appearances across all competitions.

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Dawson rose through the youth ranks of the Owls before signing his first professional deal in 2013 (Getty Images)

To put things into perspective, Cameron Dawson might have found himself in and out of the first-team at Sheffield Wednesday due to frequent managerial changes and stiff competition for places, but he is a real talent nevertheless, and Rangers have every reason to look at him as a long-term solution to their goalkeeping conundrum. 

Allan McGregor,37, is out of contract next summer and while talks over an extension beyond next summer are underway with the veteran, the Ibrox giants need to bring in a promising shot-stopper as a part of their long-term plans moving forward under Steven Gerrard. 

Wes Foderingham, who also faces an uncertain future at Rangers beyond the ongoing season, has attracted interest from MLS outfit DC United (h/t Daily Mail).

Jak Alnwick has established himself as the first-choice in his loan spell at Blackpool in League One but he hasn’t really played a lot under Gerrard, while Andy Firth is hardly knocking on the door for a role in the playing XI. 

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The homegrown star’s unresolved contract situation has put a number of clubs on red alert (Getty Images)

Verdict

McGregor still looks good to continue for another season or two but Rangers would eventually need to consider other options to replace the veteran, and Cameron Dawson looks like a decent option in the right age bracket at 24.

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Moreover, his imminent availability on a free transfer should make him a completely risk-free signing for Rangers, who have snapped up a number of players using that policy in the recent past. 

Suffice to say, Rangers completing a swoop for Cameron Dawson next summer could pay off handsomely for them in the years to come given that he is a talented individual with a lot of potential.

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Written by Sayan Chatterjee

A Premier League enthusiast and an avid follower of the beautiful game... keen eye for tactical battles and love to discuss the financial aspects of football...other hobbies include reading, listening to music, playing FIFA on PlayStation, traveling, etc.
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