Former Rangers striker Ryan Hardie will be playing in England’s Championship next season after being rewarded with a new contract at League One winners Plymouth Argyle.
Argyle’s remarkable rise from the fourth-tier to the second in the space of just three years owes as much to their recruitment department as it does the outstanding management of Ryan Lowe and current boss Steven Schumacher.
Ryan Hardie, the one-time Rangers prospect recruited from Blackpool back in 2021, is one of just many inspired, bargain signings Plymouth have completed in recent transfer windows. Fitting, then, that it was Hardie who hogged the majority of the Home Park headlines this term; top-scoring with 17 goals as Schumacher’s side both won the league and smashed the 100-point barrier.
Hardie’s new three-year contract, meanwhile, is reward for his consistency over two prolific campaigns on the Devon coast.
Former Rangers youngster Ryan Hardie hits the big time at Plymouth
“It is great news that Ryan has committed his long-term future to the club,” Schumacher smiles. “He was an integral part of our success last season, and will be a big part of what we are aiming to achieve moving forward.
“At just 26 years of age he still as lots of room for growth and development and is exactly the sort of player we want as part of the squad as we head into the Championship next season.
“Ryan fits the exact profile of the type of player we want as part of the squad moving forward,” adds Director of Football Neil Dewsnip. “We have a young, talented and ambitious squad who will be taking on the Championship next season.
“He is quick, athletic and has excellent movement and we are confident he will hit the ground running against Championship defences. This is an exciting summer for the club, and I am delighted we have managed to get Ryan’s services sorted so quickly.”
Whether Hardie – or Plymouth – can make the step up remains to be seen.
But at the age of 26, and with nearly 40 goals to his name since the start of 2021/22, the former Scotland U21 international is certainly making good on the potential that had him tipped for such big things at Rangers.