GLASGOW Rangers manager Steven Gerrard is planning to retain Nigerian centerback Leon Balogun beyond the end of the season following his scintillating form in the Scottish Premiership this campaign.
Balogun, 32, joined Rangers on a one-year deal last July from English Premier League side Brighton with the Glasgow club having the option to extend his stay for a further year. Since moving to Scotland, the defender has been immense, establishing himself as one of the pillars of the team, alongside compatriot Joe Aribo.
Delighted with Balogun’s form, Gerrard has decided to exercise the option of retaining the player for at least another season. With Balogun helping Rangers keep fourteen clean sheets in the 18 matches he played, Gerrard considers the Super Eagles international one of the club’s valuable assets.
In the heart of the Rangers defence, Balogun has formed a formidable partnership with Englishman Connor Goldson. Running away with the Scottish league titled as they are 25 points clear at the top of the table, Rangers have only conceded six goals all season compared with the 15 of their nearest rivals Celtic.
Mr Gerrard said: “All contract chat will remain private between players and the club once they get up and running. At the right time, we will sit down with Allan McGregor and see what he wants to do in terms of his own future but Leon Balogun is also someone we want to keep hold of.
“He knows that, he is performing ever so well. He signed a contract with an option of an extension and we want him to be here beyond this season.”
Originally signed to provide injury cover for Nikola Katic, Balogun has been nothing short of a revelation since joining on a free last year. He has not only established himself as a regular starter but also as a fans’ favourite.