Bongani Zungu is a 'high level footballer' says Rangers boss Steven Gerrard after South African makes impressive debut

Rangers manager Steven Gerrard believes Bongani Zungu has already shown in just 45 minutes how much of an influence he can have on the rest of the Ibrox squad’s campaign.

South African international midfielder Zungu made his first appearance for Rangers since completing his season-long loan move from French club Amiens in the closing hours of the transfer window last month.

The 28-year-old replaced Ryan Jack at half-time of the crushing 8-0 defeat of Hamilton Accies at Ibrox on Sunday. Rangers were 4-0 up at the break and Zungu slotted in seamlessly, playing with composure and strength at the hub of Gerrard’s midfield.

Rangers: Get the latest team news, match previews and reports

Rangers: Get the latest team news, match previews and reports

“He came into the game at a good time,” said Gerrard. “He's only going to get stronger, fitter and better. But you can see his range of passing, you can see his profile, you can see his aggressiveness.

Bongani Zungu earned praise from manager Steven Gerrard after making his debut for Rangers in the 8-0 win over Hamilton Accies at Ibrox on Sunday. (Photo by Alan Harvey / SNS Group)
Bongani Zungu earned praise from manager Steven Gerrard after making his debut for Rangers in the 8-0 win over Hamilton Accies at Ibrox on Sunday. (Photo by Alan Harvey / SNS Group)

“He can play, he'll have no problems at all. He'll give us another real strong option in the middle of midfield. I had no qualms about replacing Jacko with Bongani because he's a high level footballer.”

Gerrard revealed he took Jack off to lighten the load on the Scotland international ahead of his involvement in the Euro 2020 play-off final against Serbia in Belgrade on Thursday. It was the same reason he left Northern Ireland captain Steven Davis, whose country face Slovakia in their final, out of his matchday squad.

"The game was done at half-time, with all due respect, and I wanted to respect Jacko and the Scotland situation,” said Gerrard. “That’s why I left Davo out – he was fit and could have played. But they have two huge finals this week.”

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