Warburton backs James Tavernier for Premier League; did Newcastle make a mistake?

Rangers manager Mark Warburton has tipped James Tavernier to return to the Premier League.

Rangers manager Mark Warburton has told the Daily Express that full back James Tavernier can play in the Premier League.

Tavernier, 23, joined Rangers from Wigan Athletic earlier this summer having endured a tough time with the Latics, but in his short time at Ibrox, the right back has quickly become a fan favourite.

His winning goal against Hibernian on Sunday has now taken his record to four goals in six games for Rangers, a frankly stunning record for a right back.

The ex-Leeds trainee has been Warburton's best signing so far, and the Rangers boss told the Daily Express that Tavernier has a future in the Premier League ahead of him if he continues to develop and impress during his time at Ibrox.

"I think James can play at the highest level, he can play in the Premier League," said Warburton. "He is a very talented player. He’s quick, strong, clever on the ball and has a good delivery. I knew he was a good athlete and a good player. He has certain flair aspects to his game that you want to see on top of his defensive responsibilities.

"There is loads of development potential to come from him. He has to work hard, and he does. I was very thankful to get him because I didn’t think we would. Clubs were aware of him but some hesitated and we secured him. The timing was good for us," he added.

Tavernier will be focusing on his Rangers career, but a return to the Premier League may be a dream for him considering his previous spell with Newcastle United.

The full back only made two Premier League appearances for the Magpies before leaving permanently in 2014, but some times it takes regular first team football to help a player show their quality.

That's certainly the case with Tavernier, who is proving his worth to Rangers on a weekly basis - even if it is only in the Scottish Championship right now.

Newcastle fans may not see selling Tavernier as a mistake just yet, but they would also love to see more players come up through the academy and become first team players.

If Tavernier continues to star in Scotland and returns to the Premier League, some Magpies supporters may look at his potential as a missed opportunity - but for now, Tavernier must prove himself at a higher level before Newcastle fans can really think about what could have been, despite Warburton's comments.

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