Rangers eye “complete” 27-year-old Southampton star Carlo Ancelotti tipped to “go to the top”

Rangers-linked Mason Holgate, an Everton defender, was previously tipped to “go to the top” under Carlo Ancelotti.

The 27-year-old centre-back is presently on loan at Southampton, with the Sun reporting that Rangers are one of several clubs keeping an eye on his position.
Everton are reportedly set to recall Mason Holgate from his loan spell at St Mary’s in January, despite the fact that the centre-back has only made five appearances for Southampton this season.

Rangers are reportedly interested in the scenario, with English Championship clubs Middlesbrough and Watford also interested in the centre-back.


Holgate targets promotion | Article | Southampton FC Official Site

Carlo Ancelotti tipped Mason Holgate to have “fantastic career”

While Mason Holgate’s season has been a disappointment, the Everton defender was once expected to be the best in the league.

Former England U21 international Holgate, who joined the Toffees for £2 million from Barnsley in 2015, was once one of the most highly-rated talents south of the line.

Holgate signed for Everton under Roberto Martinez and went on to work under Ronald Koeman, Sam Allardyce, and Ronald Koeman at the club after being on trial at Manchester United.

Carlo Ancelotti was named as Everton’s manager in 2019, but it was in 2020 that the great Italian manager heaped admiration on Mason Holgate.

In an interview with Everton’s official website following Mason Holgate’s contract extension until 2024, the current Real Madrid manager expressed his belief that the defender has the potential to reach the pinnacle of the sport.

“I didn’t have prior knowledge of Mason before arriving here, and I was pleasantly surprised by him,” Ancelotti mentioned. “During this time, he has displayed considerable defensive quality and a strong focus on his defensive duties.”

Ancelotti praised Holgate’s attributes, stating, “He possesses the qualities necessary to excel as a defender. His speed, physical strength, and proficiency in aerial duels make him a complete defender. He’s still very young and eager to develop. Under my management, he has not made any significant mistakes in games.”

The Real Madrid manager continued by emphasizing Holgate’s potential, saying, “If he maintains this level of focus, he has the capability to reach the highest echelons of the sport. I believe he is poised to have an outstanding career.”

Is Rangers place to get career on track?

Following the season when Carlo Ancelotti expressed high praise for Mason Holgate, the defender’s career trajectory has seemingly stalled.

During the season Ancelotti made those comments, the potential Jamaican international defender featured in 32 games under the Italian manager, even briefly holding the captaincy. Over the subsequent two seasons, he added 43 more appearances in the English Premier League as a center-back.

However, in the past season, Holgate’s playing opportunities diminished significantly, participating in only eight Premier League matches. This led to a temporary move to the Championship with Southampton this year.

Southampton, managed by former Rangers defender Russell Martin, appears to have not favored Mason Holgate for reasons not explicitly mentioned.

The transfer speculation emerges at a time when Rangers, having faced a series of injuries disrupting the club’s defensive line in recent seasons, could benefit from bolstering their defensive options.

Despite maintaining the best defensive record in Scotland this season, uncertainties loom over the availability and longevity of key players such as Connor Goldson, Leon Balogun, Ben Davies, and John Souttar for Rangers.

Considering this situation, Rangers might be an ideal destination for Mason Holgate. The Ibrox club has shown itself to be a favorable option for English talents who may have lost their way, providing them with an environment to reignite their passion for the sport.

Could Holgate follow in the footsteps of players like Todd Cantwell, Jack Butland, or even Dujon Sterling, arriving in Glasgow to strengthen Philippe Clement’s squad?

Interestingly, there’s a sense among some fans of missed opportunities, particularly regarding the potential signing of a former Chelsea player who has now garnered comparisons to Diego Maradona, coming from a similar background or circumstances.

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