Matt Gilks' Scunthorpe United form underlines frustration at Rangers spell

Rangers fans are seen during the Scottish Cup Quarter final match between Rangers and Hamilton Academical at Ibrox Stadium on March 4, 2017 in Glasgow, Scotland.

Matt Gilks didn't make a single league appearance at Rangers during 18 months at Ibrox.

Matt Gilks of Scunthorpe United in action during the Emirates FA Cup First Round Replay match between Scunthorpe United and Northampton Town at Glanford Park on November 14, 2017 in...

At 35, Matt Gilks does not have too many years left in the professional game. But the veteran goalkeeper is rolling back the years in League One with Scunthorpe United, proving once and for all that age is nothing but a number.

Gilks moved to Glanford Park on a free transfer in June after a six-month spell at Wigan Athletic and, as it stands, looks like one of the signings of the season so far in the third tier.

Matt Smith of QPR scores their first goal past goalkeeper Matt Gilks of Wigan Athletic during the Sky Bet Championship match between Queens Park Rangers and Wigan Athletic at Loftus Road...

The Scotland keeper’s fine displays have helped Scunthorpe rise to third in the table but, while Friday’s 2-0 win at home to Charlton Athletic will be remembered more for two stunning goals by Josh Morris, Gilks’ performance at the other end proved just as instrumental.

Still as agile as ever and a real vocal presence inside the box, the former Blackpool goalkeeper remains one of the best at this level. And with 20 League One starts under his belt in 2017/18, there’s no doubting that he is still worthy of regular first-team football.

All of which makes his ill-fated spell at Rangers look all the more frustrating. Few could blame Gilks jumping at the chance to make the biggest move of his career when leaving Burnley in 2016 but his 18 months at Ibrox clearly did not go to plan.

Matt Gilks of Rangers in action during a pre-season friendly between Rangers FC and Burnley FC at Ibrox Stadium on July 30, 2016 in Glasgow, Scotland.

Stuck behind the talented Wes Foderingham, he did not make a single league appearance with all five of his outings coming in the Scottish League Cup. Though, to his credit, he did keep four clean sheets.

But, looking back, Gilks will most likely see those 18 inactive months at Rangers as something of a waste of time with his playing career winding down. Though at least he can take solace in knowing he’s back to his best after escaping his Ibrox nightmare.

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