USA international James Sands has made a solid return to MLS outfit NYCFC after seeing his loan stint with Rangers cut short at the beginning of March.

The defensive midfielder, 21, didn’t enjoy the strongest spell in Glasgow with his defensive frailties evident during an enforced stint at centre-back and the player unable to break into the Gers midfield.

Rangers FC v AFC Ajax: Group A - UEFA Champions League
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This came at a time when there was much criticism around several of the senior squad members, a potential testament to the player’s lack of impact at the club, particularly this season.

Signed on an 18-month loan deal from NYCFC last January, the player only lasted the guts of 14 in Glasgow before Rangers sanctioned a post-MLS season return for the player, consigning the switch to the growing list of failed transfers.

Given the club had just signed Nicolas Raskin in the player’s position, a Belgian U21 international who has already began to grip the fans, Sands was unlikely to get minutes at Ibrox.

James Sands makes bright return to NYCFC action

Since returning to New York the player has begun to play an influential role in a bright start to the season, with the MLS side unbeaten since the midfielder came into the team.

Following on from a start in the 1-1 draw with Chicago and 90 minutes in the 1-0 win over Inter Miami, James Sands made it two wins from three by playing the full game in a 3-2 victory over DC United.

This comes after the club lost their MLS opener 2-0 to Nashville.

NYCFC look likely to employ James Sands in his preferred defensive midfield position and it already appears to be paying dividends for the MLS club.

But at Rangers James Sands struggled to leave a proper impression on the squad, division and support, even if the player thinks especially highly of himself.

After returning to New York, James Sands claimed that Rangers wanted to make the deal permanent with the reported £4.5m option-to-buy the stumbling block.

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