Rangers boss Steven Gerrard has confirmed that he made one final attempt to secure the signing of Ryan Kent from Liverpool, before settling on the backup option of Brandon Barker.
Kent spent last season on loan at Ibrox and was in scintillating form, scoring six goals and assisting a further nine as the Gers finished nine points behind leaders Celtic in second place.
Due to these impressive performances, Gerrard was keen to orchestrate the return of the 22-year-old – but as he told the Daily Record, there was never any chance of the winger leaving Anfield this summer.
“I don’t think it is a secret we tried to get Ryan Kent to return," he said. "Liverpool knew how much wanted the player to come back. But I was told a week ago by Jurgen Klopp that he wouldn’t be going out on loan, so I respect that decision."
Despite this initial rebuttal, Gerrard made an audacious second attempt to secure Kent's services.
"We checked again a couple of days ago. I spoke to the technical director Michael Edwards. He made it very clear, again, that it wouldn’t be happening so we had to move in a different direction."
Unlikely to unseat any of Liverpool's front three from the starting lineup, Kent may be restricted to appearances with the club's Under-23s side.