Rangers attacking midfielder Ianis Hagi continues to grow at Ibrox and the player’s increasing contribution has been recognised by Steven Gerrard.

The son of Romanian footballing legend Gheorghe Hagi, Ianis has big boots to fill but the early part of this season suggests that the 22-year-old is well on his way to doing so.

Hagi’s fiercely competitive midfield performance in the 1-0 win over Alashkert was a sign of a player in live development, the ex-Genk star’s eagerness to grow evident by his increasing versatility.

Gerrard paid tribute to “ultimate professional” Hagi as the club prepared for the trip to Ross County with the player becoming a leader and a warrior for the Ibrox club.

“I thought Ianis was superb for the majority of the game. He’s in a fantastic place,” said Gerrard [Rangers].

“He’s had a full pre-season. He got that unfortunate kick against Livingston which set him back a bit.

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“But the kid just seems to be growing and evolving every year.

“He’s the ultimate professional, he wants to learn, he wants to grow, he wants to get better.

 

“We’re all aware of the stable he comes from. He’s got a real iconic father figure who he wants to follow in the footsteps of.

“We don’t want to put that pressure on him but there’s a lot of traits in terms of his professionalism and how he goes about it.

“He loves the game and just wants to improve and get to the top.

Tranmere Rovers v Glasgow Rangers  - Pre-Season Friendly

Ianis Hagi scored eight goals and laid on 15 assists for Rangers last season and has started this campaign strongly. (Photo by Matthew Ashton – AMA/Getty Images)

“He’s a pleasure to work with and we can see the development in him every single season.

“He seems to be getting stronger, he’s adapted to the league a lot better now and his performances have been strong so far.

“I expect him to have a real strong season if we can keep him healthy.”

Initially signed on loan in the January of 2020, Hagi has grown season on season with Rangers and it’s interesting to note the progress of an alternative player the Gers were once linked to.

Croatian midfielder Lovro Majer was being linked to Ibrox before Rangers pounced on Hagi with many believing the two were on the same shortlist.

FC Sheriff v Dinamo Zagreb - UEFA Champions League: Play-Offs Leg One

Reports linking Lovro Majer with a substantial transfer exit highlight the value and progress of Hagi. (Photo by Goran Stanzl/Pixsell/MB Media/Getty Images)

Now, Dinamo star Majer’s recent performances are reportedly resulting in €15m (£12.8m) interest from Ligue 1 and Rennes in France [Foot Mercato].

With one more season at Ibrox under his belt – and Hagi in ever improving form – you get the feeling that this amount might barely touch the sides at Ibrox.

More importantly for the fans however, Hagi’s progress is making him an invaluable player for the club.

Meanwhile, Rangers boss Steven Gerrard has been explaining why one of the club’s attacking players has been dropped from a major Ibrox squad.

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