Jack Butland’s fine display in Rangers’ UEFA Champions League qualification victory over Servette left Neil McCann ‘astounded’ with the former Ibrox winger hailing an ‘unbelievably good signing’.
On Saturday, Livingston coach David Martindale singled out Jack Butland after Rangers’ new number one made a superb save with the scoreline still 1-0 at Ibrox, the 30-year-old’s reactions laying down the foundations for an eventually straightforward win.
And, as Mick Beale’s side moved one giant step closer to the Champions League group-stages three days later, it was Butland once again who paved the way for victory; Rangers triumphing 2-1 on aggregate after a nervy 90 minutes in Switzerland.
“I’m so surprised they’ve got Jack Butland,” McCann tells BBC Scotland, Rangers’ former England international making a pair of key one-v-one stops before James Tavernier headed the Glasgow giants into the next round.
“I thought that was an unbelievably good signing. To replace someone of the stature of Allan McGregor with someone like this guy…
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“He’s at a good age, and I think he’s got so much left in him.”
Jack Butland shines as Rangers reach Champions League play-off
Butland spent the second half of last season on loan at Manchester United. And McCann believes Rangers pulled off quite the coup when they succeeded in luring a shot-stopper of his quality and experience north of the border.
“I was astounded he chose to come to Rangers over staying in the English Premier League,” the former Scotland forward adds. “Because he must have had options.
“This guy makes big saves. How many times over the years did we see Allan McGregor not have too much to do but be called into action and come up with a top save?
“Tonight, he (Butland) made several.”
Rangers, for the second year in a row, will now face Dutch giants PSV Eindhoven at the final qualifying stage. PSV cruised past Austrian outfit Sturm Graz, and will have Malik Tillman in their ranks at Ibrox.
It was Tilman, wearing Rangers blue at the time, who knocked PSV out 12 months ago.