Glasgow Rangers managed to put four goals past fourth-tier side Dumbarton in their Scottish Cup fourth-round clash on the weekend, but it could have been more for Philippe Clement’s side.
The Ibrox manager will have been pleased with the professionalism shown by his team, while a few players managed to secure some much-needed minutes following recent injury problems, most notably Ryan Jack and Borna Barisic.
Among those on the scoresheet was Cyriel Dessers, who netted his tenth goal of the season in the 4-1 victory against the Sons.
He has netted a goal roughly once every three games since joining the Ibrox side last summer and on the surface, that is a decent enough statistic, yet he has missed 11 big chances in front of goal and his performances have been poor throughout the campaign.
With the transfer window closing next week, Clement does not have long to add another striker who could be an upgrade on the Nigerian. Here are three forwards who could arrive at the Light Blues this month and replace Dessers in the starting XI.
First up is the latest name to be linked with a move to the Gers. According to Football Insider, Clement is reportedly monitoring the Bristol City striker ahead of potentially making a move for the youngster during the winter window.
They face competition from Old Firm rivals Celtic along with the likes of Wolverhampton Wanderers, Nottingham Forest, and Brentford for the City hitman as he has clearly attracted plenty of attention due to his performances.
Having recently scored the winner against West Ham United in their FA Cup replay – being dubbed “clinical” by Statman Dave in the process – Conway has shown he can shine against the elite and this may tempt Clement into a move.
Although he has two goals less than Dessers this season, he has missed only five big chances in the Championship, which is six less than the Gers striker and it proves he is more accurate in front of goal.
The 6 foot 1 machine is only 21 and is eight years younger than the former Feyenoord frontman, which suggests his best years are still to come and this could very well tempt the Belgian into luring him to Scotland sooner rather than later.
He is not the only striker who has been linked with a move to Rangers as a possible Dessers replacement however as the next name on the list is from close to home…
Perhaps the player who has been mentioned the most when it comes to leaving their current club to join the Light Blues, Lawrence Shankland is a hot commodity right now.
According to Football Insider, the Gers could be looking to bring the Scot to Glasgow this month in the hope that he can continue his stunning goalscoring form that has seen him shine at Hearts since the start of last season.
He could cost around £3m potentially and while this does not appear much on the surface, Shankland will be 29 this year and paying that sort of money for a player with little to no resale value could be a mistake.
In the short term, however, he would be an upgrade on Dessers. Indeed, this season, Shankland has netted more goals (18 vs ten), along with registering more shots per game (3.6 vs 2.9), more successful dribbles per game (0.9 vs 0.4) and a better scoring frequency (a goal every 145 minutes vs a goal every 187 minutes) and these statistics show that the 28-year-old could score more regularly in Scotland than Dessers.
Former Rangers icon Barry Ferguson even claimed that the Hearts striker would be a good fit for the club, saying: “Let’s start with Lawrence Shankland who catches my eye every time I see him play for Hearts.
“This guy has improved his game to such an extent over the last couple of years that I’m surprised he’s not been snapped up already but, watching him on Wednesday, I saw a ready-made Rangers centre forward.”
Clement could supercharge Cantwell in Rangers move for £3m gem
Rangers could be eyeing a move to sign a Scottish striker this month
A move to Rangers could see the former Dundee United gem play in Europe and challenge for trophies. If a move was to be made, he may find it very hard to turn down, that’s for sure.
The final name on the list is one that Clement knows very well during his spell with Club Brugge, as Emmanuel Dennis has been linked with a move during the current transfer window.
Belgian journalist Sacha Tavolieri confirmed earlier this month that the Gers had been offered the player, saying: “Emmanuel Dennis has been proposed to the club but there hasn’t been an official approach as of now. I can confirm the player’s interest for Rangers though.”
The Nigerian scored ten goals in 46 games under Clement at Club Brugge, netting against the likes of Real Madrid in the Champions League and Manchester United in the Europa League during his stint in Belgium.
This clearly proves he has what it takes to score against the very elite and while his form this term is hardly prolific, his ability to play across a few positions could appeal to Clement.
Indeed, the 26-year-old can operate on either the left or right wing as well as through the middle and he has even been known to play just off the main striker during his career.
A move to the Light Blues could see him reunite with the 49-year-old and this may be what Dennis requires in order to start performing at his best again.
These three players would all offer something different for Clement as he aims to strengthen his squad, but it remains to be seen whether the club manage to bring any of them to Scotland in the coming days.
If the former AS Monaco coach wishes to add more trophies to the League Cup that was secured last month, at least one other centre-forward will need to be signed and this could well be the main focus before the transfer window slams shut next week.