Following a devastating defeat to Celtic in Sunday’s League Cup final, Rangers must look to fulfil their other 2019/20 ambitions. One of those is getting through to the knockout stages of the Europa League and Jordan Jones is a player who can help them do that.

The Northern Ireland international has been out injured since the Old Firm league clash in September when he lashed out at Moritz Bauer.

Jones receives a red card for his wild challenge on Bauer at Ibrox. (Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images)

He returned to training at the back end of last month, though, and could be ready to return against Young Boys on Thursday evening.

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It’s over two weeks since Gerrard predicted that he’d be ready for selection in ’10 days’, so a place in Thursday’s matchday squad is certainly a realistic possibility.

When things aren’t quite going to plan on the pitch, fans always clamour for those who aren’t featuring. There’s that old adage that you become a better player when you’re out of the side.

 

It’s important not to forget that Jones has his downsides. Up until this point in his career, he’s lacked consistency and his end product, be that in terms of crossing or finishing, still needs plenty of work. Just the four goals and four assists in 28 league appearances for Killie last season evidence that [Transfermarkt].

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However, what he does bring to the side is electric pace as well as both a willingness and ability to go past defenders.

That’s the type of player Steven Gerrard lacked on what was an underwhelming Gers bench on Sunday.

Two wingers, Brandon Barker and Sheyi Ojo were included in the squad. Barker was the only one to make it onto the pitch and he really struggled to make an impact.

Jones offers more pace and trickery than others who have played in his absence. (Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images)

It’s still early days in his Rangers career, but he appears to lack confidence on the ball and failed to go by his man on multiple occasions. Further to that, the fact that he was ahead of Ojo in the pecking order, tells you a lot about the Liverpool loanees recent displays.

Jones may still be a rough diamond, but he’s lightning-quick and plays with high self-confidence. After Celtic were reduced to ten men at Hampden, the Gers simply didn’t have enough of those things.

The players will be hurt after missing out, but there’s another big occasion just a matter of days away, and drafting the mercurial 25-year-old back into the squad could give the group a lift.

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