At the age of 28, David Templeton should be enjoying the peak years of his career. Instead, the one-time prospect is merely attempting to get his footballing journey back on track after two years in the wilderness.
A persistent knee problem kept Templeton out of action for 10 months after being released by Rangers in 2016 though things are looking up again after he signed a short-term deal with Hamilton Academical earlier this year. However, it’s tempting to look back on that ill-fated spell at Ibrox and wonder what might have been.
The winger shot to prominence with Hearts, scoring against Liverpool at Anfield in the Europa League in 2012 before being bought by Rangers boss Ally McCoist the very next day.
What could've been
The move was certainly a risk after Rangers were demoted to the third division and, thanks to a series of injuries, the rewards never arrived.
"When I moved to Rangers, things didn't really work out for me," Templeton, who admitted he was forced to consider retirement due to injury, told the BBC. "I wouldn't say I regret it but looking at it now it didn't work out the way I wanted.
"At the time, you could never say no to Rangers and it’s just unfortunate things didn't work out for me. For all I know, things could have gone a totally different way and I could still be there. At the time I didn't perform as well as I wanted to and had a few injuries there as well.
"It is a huge change going there, the expectancy, the pressure, everything. When things aren't going well, it is a tough place to play. I wasn't playing as well as I knew I could."
Templeton still managed to help Rangers win successive promotions in order to reach the Scottish Championship, scoring 15 goals in 24 league games in an impressive debut campaign, but featured only once in 2015/16 and was released by manager Mark Warburton soon after.