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Cedric Itten is now in the last-chance saloon at Rangers after the striker returned to replace Jermain Defoe at Ibrox – that’s the opinion of Barry Ferguson, via his Daily Record column.

Giovanni van Bronckhorst has recalled Itten to Glasgow halfway through a season-long loan with Greuther Furth. The Gers boss has decided to give the 25-year-old a chance to shine in the Premiership again after allowing Defoe to leave the club earlier this week.

Defoe had only featured twice all season, with one appearance following Van Bronckhorst’s arrival to replace Steven Gerrard as manager. The Dutchman had also removed the 39-year-old from the club’s coaching staff upon taking up the hot seat in November.

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Gerrard let Itten leave Rangers on loan in what would be his last transfer window in charge. His £3m signing from St Gallen in 2020 had endured a mixed first season with the Gers.

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Itten hit six goals and three assists over 40 appearances across all competitions in 2020/21. But only four of his strikes came in the Premiership, while starting just four of their games.

He failed to start the current season in strong form, either, with no goals over four outings before joining Furth. While in the Bundesliga, the seven-cap ace scored twice in 12 games.

Itten is playing for his future at Rangers after loan transfer recall

Itten’s goals for Greuther Furth during his loan transfer from Rangers came against Bayern Munich and Eintracht Frankfurt. Van Bronckhorst will now hope he offers more than he did under Gerrard. While for Ferguson, Itten’s form will determine if he has a future at Ibrox.

“I’ve always thought there might be a proper Rangers player inside Cedric Itten. But, if there is, then the big man had better hurry up and get it out,” Ferguson wrote.

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“He wouldn’t have expected this second chance to come around so quickly at the start of the season when Steven Gerrard let him leave on loan to German side Greuther Furth. He may even have suspected at the time as if this was the start of the end of his Ibrox career.

“But things change quickly in football and, when they do, you have to be ready to make the most of the opportunities which land on your lap. And make no mistake, this is Itten’s big chance to prove that he has a future at my old club. Probably his last one.”

Itten has two-and-a-half-years remaining on the contract he signed after joining Rangers in the summer 2020 transfer window under Gerrard. The Gers would hope to recoup most, if not all, of the fee paid to Swiss side St Gallen if they ultimately elect to sell him this year.

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