Standard Liege had no choice but to sell Nicolas Raskin to Scottish Premiership giants Rangers in January with the midfielder’s exit the ‘solution to a serious problem’, the Jupiler League club’s sporting director Fergal Harkin tells Voetbal Nieuws.

If Sunday’s thrilling 3-2 Scottish Cup win over Partick Thistle is anything to go by, Standard’s loss should be Mick Beale’s gain.

Raskin, on his first Rangers start, provided some much-needed composure and guile during a frantic Ibrox afternnoon; setting up Antonio Colak’s second-half header with a trademark slaloming run and an inch-perfect cross.


The Belgium U21 international joined for a reported £1.7 million. In time, he could prove to be one of the finest pound-for-pound signings in Rangers’ recent history.

Raskin, a complete and well-rounded midfielder capable of making decisive contributions at either end of the pitch, was valued closer to £6 million as recently as last summer. In fact, he was only available for a knock-down fee because his Standard Lige contract was expiring.

Nicolas Raskin already impressing at Rangers following Standard Liege exit

“For Raskin and (Morocco international Selim) Amallah, we found a solution to a serious problem,” says Harkin, Amallah joining Real Valladolid on deadline day.

“We couldn’t reach an agreement to keep them for the long term. So it was necessary to find a way out in January.”

Harkin, a former Manchester City chief who was linked with Celtic back in 2021, is determined to ensure that Standard learn from a rather unseemly situation, both Raskin and Amallah frozen out of the first-team picture during the final few weeks of last year as their deals ran down.

“We should never again be in a situation where two of our most important players have an expiring contract,” he says.

It is Raskin’s flexibility and wide-ranging skillset, meanwhile, that caught Beale’s eye. Despite his diminutive frame, Raskin produced some of the best tackling statistics in Belgium during the first half of this season in addition to his four assists.

“I don’t want to put these two players in competition,” Beale explains, via The Herald. “But he and Glen (Kamara) are going to have a massive tussle to play in a similar role. They can play together, for sure, but they are very similar.

“Raskin is not a tough man. He’s not a tackler. He’s a technical player like Glen. He’ll intercept and run hard, but he’s not a little Rottweiler.

“He can play as a ‘six’ or an ‘eight’. He can dribble with the ball and has a good passing range. Then it’s just a matter of settling in. At 21, he’s got all his future in front of him.”

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