Cedric Itten opens up on the difficulties of settling into life at Rangers during the coronavirus crisis
Cedric Itten has expressed his gratitude to Rangers manager Steven Gerrard for helping him cope with his issues on and off the pitch during a challenging start to his career with the Ibrox club.
The Swiss international striker, signed from St Gallen for £2.7 million at the start of August, has not seen his family since he arrived in Glasgow where he has spent much of his time in isolation because of coronavirus protocols.
Itten was also short of match fitness but is steadily making more of an impact for Rangers. He scored his fourth goal for the club when he stepped off the bench to grab the crucial second in their come-from-behind 3-1 win over Motherwell at Ibrox on Saturday which left them 16 points clear at the top of the Premiership.
“The manager has spoken to me a lot since the transfer,” said Itten. “I get a lot of confidence from him and he has been a big help.
“He knew I didn’t have a pre-season here like some of the other players. I came directly from another league but he’s been very helpful in me settling in. I’m really pleased about that.
“It’s nice here because the club is great. But with all the quarantines, it is not easy. Because it is now five months without seeing family. The club helps me so much so I can always talk to everyone here and that’s great.
“It’s not easy because of the Covid restrictions. It’s not easy to have family over or anything like that because of quarantine. But I am very happy to be here and with all the help I have received.
“I just try to improve every day and work hard. It’s a different league and it takes time to adapt.
“But I always try to work hard and I’m just happy when I get my minutes on the pitch. I try to play as good as possible to help the team and to get success.”
It was a significant victory for Rangers on Saturday as they performed under intense scrutiny following their first defeat of the season in the Betfred Cup quarter-final at St Mirren three days earlier.
“It was very important for the whole team,” admitted Itten. “We needed to show a reaction after the last game.
“It wasn’t easy to get it back from 1-0 down but I think the reaction and the mentality of the team was great. That’s why we won the game.
“It gives us a lot of confidence going forward. It just shows the mentality of the whole team. We had our game plan and we kept going until the end. We knew we had the quality to score and thankfully we did and won the game.
“I was sure we were going to score because I know we have so much quality and so many good players. We had five substitutes available as well. I was sure it was going to come and it was even better that we ended up with three goals.”
A message from the Editor:
Thank you for reading this article. We're more reliant on your support than ever as the shift in consumer habits brought about by coronavirus impacts our advertisers.
If you haven't already, please consider supporting our trusted, fact-checked journalism by taking out a digital subscription.
Want to join the conversation? Please or to comment on this article.