Steven Gerrard earns top praise for “spot on” Leon Balogun signing
Jan. 07, 2021
GLASGOW, SCOTLAND – JANUARY 02: Rangers’ Leon Balogun and Celtic’s Odsonne Edouard in action during a Scottish Premiership match between Rangers and Celtic at Ibrox Stadium, on January 02, 2021, in Glasgow, Scotland (Photo by Craig Williamson/SNS Group via Getty Images)
Rangers’ manager Steven Gerrard and the management of the Scottish Premiership club have been praised for the summer signing of Nigerian defender Leon Balogun.
Speaking on the Open Goal YouTube Channel, Rangers legend Barry Ferguson, while talking about the Old Firm Derby and Rangers’ defensive performance in that victory over Glasgow rivals Celtic, pointed out that the Super Eagles star was one of Gers’ top performers.
Ferguson, a former Rangers and Scotland national team captain, also gave credit to Celtic’s frontline of Odsonne Edouard and Leigh Griffiths, claiming that they made sure Balogun and his central defence partner Conor Goldson knew they weren’t going to have an easy time of it.
“Balogun and Goldson knew they were in a game straight away,” Ferguson said.
The Open Goal panel then went on to discuss a tackle Balogun made during the game, and Ferguson chimed in with his view on the incident.
“Unbelievable, that’s why he’s played, did you see his recovery? So pacy, what a find he’s been,” remarked Ferguson.
“I know how hard it is to get players in right, and you need to try and to get them in on the first day of pre-season. You need to get them in to get them to know the environment they’re in, get them to know their teammates, get them to know the standards and the expectations of the club, and that’s where Steven Gerrard got it spot on.”
Balogun, who is a mainstay of the Super Eagles, has been ever-present for the Scottish league leaders since his summer arrival from English side Wigan Athletic, where he struggled to gain first-team football.
That was also the case for Balogun at his erstwhile English Premier League club Brighton, but his fortune has taken a turn for the better since he teamed with Rangers, who are on track to win their first league title in a decade after creating a 19-point gap between them and their fierce rivals after beating Celtic 1-0 last weekend.