Steven Gerrard has provided his former teammate Jon Flanagan with a golden opportunity to get his career back on track after the 25-year-old defender was released by Liverpool earlier this summer.
Flanagan played one game for the Merseyside outfit last season, a 2-0 EFL Cup defeat against Leicester City back in September, before being loaned out to Bolton Wanderers.
However, the one-time England international’s reputation was left severely tarnished last December after he was arrested for assaulting his girlfriend. He later pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 40 hours of unpaid work and handed a 12-month community order.
Subsequently, it came as no surprise that Liverpool decided against renewing his contract this summer.
Aside from his off-field conduct, Flanagan had also fallen behind Trent Alexander-Arnold and Nathaniel Clyne in the pecking order at Anfield.
When it was announced that Rangers had signed the right-back, there was a mixed reaction from Rangers fans on social media.
Unsurprisingly, some were totally against the signing of Flanagan, despite the player’s talent. Others, though, believe he deserves a second chance.
BARRY FERGUSON HAS HIS SAY ON FLANAGAN’S SIGNING
Former Rangers captain Barry Ferguson has now given his honest opinion about Flanagan’s signing in his latest Daily Record column – and it’s sure to divide opinion.
“I stand with the vast majority of football people when it comes to debating Jon Flanagan’s signing,” he said. “The former Liverpool full-back did wrong and was handed a 12-month community order earlier this year for assaulting his girlfriend in December.
“He made a bad mistake, pleaded guilty and is serving his sentence but he needs to be allowed to move on with his life and career.
“I’m a big believer in second chances, not just in football but in life in general, as people must be given the right to earn redemption for their wrongdoings.”
‘I’VE MADE MISTAKES AND HAD CHANCES TO ATONE’
He added: “I’ve made mistakes that have caused me great regret, especially in football, but good people gave me the chance to atone.
“It’s only right former England full-back Flanagan is allowed to focus on his career again, which had stalled at Liverpool after he sustained a knee injury four years ago.”
Not everybody will agree but Gerrard clearly feels the same as Ferguson, otherwise he wouldn’t have brought him to Ibrox.
However, it’s now down to Flanagan to prove that he’s worthy of this second chance to resurrect his career.
“I’m delighted to be here,” Flanagan told Rangers TV, per BBC Sport, earlier this week. “When I spoke to Stevie, it was a no-brainer for me. The size of the club, what the fans are about, I’m just delighted to be here and hopefully I can show all the fans what I’m about.
“I played with him at Liverpool for many years and he was a big part of me coming here.
“I know all about the club, but Stevie was a massive influence on me coming here as well.”