Why Rangers should try to beat Celtic in the race for Lawrence Shankland
According to the Daily Record, Old Firm rivals Celtic and Rangers are once again scouting prolific striker Lawrence Shankland, who currently plies his trade with Dund ee United in the Scottish Championship.
The 24-year-old was monitored repeatedly by the Old Firm duo over the course of the previous campaign during his time at Ayr United, with a view to a potential move in the summer but Shankland ended up joining Dundee United on a free transfer. (h/t Daily Record)
The Glasgow-born striker, who caught the eye with 34 goals in 41 appearances across all competitions for Ayr United last season, has once again taken the Scottish second-tier by storm this term with his sizzling start to the campaign.
Shankland has already bagged a staggering 15 goals in 12 appearances for Dundee United, including 7 in 13 league outings for Robbie Neilson’s side.
The former Aberdeen man recently bagged a hat-trick to propel the Terrors to an emphatic 6-0 victory over Greenock Morton and his jaw-dropping strike rate has once again prompted the heavyweights to keep close tabs on his progress.
A youth product of Queen’s Park, Lawrence Shankland rose to prominence with his boyhood club in the Scottish League Two before earning a move to the top-flight with Aberdeen back in 2013 as a bright emerging prospect.
However, his spell at the Pittodrie Stadium proved to be an ill-fated one and the striker managed only 17 appearances for the Dons over the course of four seasons, spending time on loan at Dunfermline Athletic, St. Mirren and Greenock Morton in the lower divisions before joining Ayr United in 2017.
A move to Somerset Park helped Shankland resurrect his faltering career, as the striker netted 29 goals in all competitions in his first season to fire Ayr United to promotion to the second-tier.
The former Scotland U-20 international racked up an eye-watering 62 goals in 73 appearances across all competitions for Ayr before switching boats to join Dundee this summer.
To put things into perspective, Lawrence Shankland might have struggled to make an impact in the Scottish Premiership at Aberdeen earlier in his career but he has registered some overly incredible numbers in the second-tier and, at 24, he definitely deserves another opportunity to prove his credentials at the highest level.
To that end, he would be a good signing for both Celtic and Rangers but the Gers would bag a massive coup if they manage to beat their bitter rivals in the race to sign the Dundee United frontman.
Having made significant improvements to his game since his failure at Aberdeen, Shankland certainly looks better equipped to make the step up to the top-flight and Steven Gerrard might opt to look at him as someone who could possibly provide cover and competition for Alfredo Morelos and veteran Jermain Defoe up top.
Defoe is very much in the twilight of his career and Morelos’ burgeoning reputation could make it difficult for Rangers to ward off potential suitors for the Colombian’s services in the near future, meaning that a move for Shankland would make a lot of sense for the Gers.
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With Kyle Lafferty now out of the picture and Shankland showing signs of entering his prime years, the 24-year-old might prove to be a good long-term investment for Rangers, although his prolific record in the second-tier means that the Gers would probably need to come up with an offer over the odds to nab him away.
Nevertheless, Rangers beating Celtic in the race to sign the 24-year-old would make their attack more potent and formidable for sure.