Calvin Bassey given £25million rating as mentor urges Premier League clubs to 'snap Rangers' hand off'

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Calvin Bassey
Calvin Bassey

PREMIER LEAGUE clubs should 'snap their hands off' if Rangers place a £25million valuation on in-demand defender Calvin Bassey this summer.

But Bassey's former mentor, Steve Beaglehole, believes a sense of loyalty could keep him at Ibrox if he believes working under Giovanni van Bronckhorst is the best move for his career.

Rangers face a fight to retain Bassey's services ahead of the new campaign after a stunning season that was rounded off by Man of the Match showings in the Europa League and Scottish Cup finals.

Aston Villa and Fulham have already been credited with an interest in Bassey and could look to test the resolve of the Ibrox board in a move that is likely to see the 22-year-old break Rangers' record received fee.

Beaglehole helped Bassey emerge through the ranks at Leicester City before he joined Rangers two years ago and knows his former stopper has all the attributes needed to be a Premier League star.

"I know what he will think and he will do what he thinks is best for him and his career," Beaglehole told Herald and Times Sport. "But I think he is also a loyal lad and he will recognise what Rangers Football Club has done for him.

"Look at Steven Gerrard, he was the one who signed him, took him up there and gave him his opportunity so there is that attraction.

"Listen, from what I have seen and how prices are going in the Premier League, if anybody rang me and said ‘we can get him, would you pay £20million or £25million’ then I would say ‘snap their hands off’. If you can get him for that, that is what I would say.

"He is a left-sided centre-back, with his physicality and athleticism, that is only going to get better. The more he plays, he is getting a lot better technically and he is a lot better technically now than when he left us.

"He always had fantastic pace and power and that gets him out of trouble when he makes mistakes, which he will do as he develops in the position. As he matures, he will make fewer mistakes and his pace will be an even greater asset because he will nick things and be breaking out with it.

"The game has trends and a trend at the moment is to play with three centre-backs. He is ideal to have as a centre-back because he can step in and overlap, he has got that in him.

"He can play left in a back four, left centre-back in a four or in a three. There is versatility there and there are not as many left-sided players as there are right-sided so, for me, he has got it all."

Bassey has gone from strength to strength at Ibrox over the last two seasons and will be an integral part of the squad that Van Bronckhorst is building for Rangers' crack at the Champions League and challenges for domestic honours next term.

And former Foxes coach Beaglehole can see similarities with another rising star of the European game as Bassey continues to attract admiring glances from south of the border.

Beaglehole said: "We have got a young player at Leicester, Wesley Fofana, who is roughly the same age and came from the French league for £30million when he was just 20. He broke his leg last season and only came back towards the end.

"He is a fabulous player and he has the same raw attributes that Bassey has got. He has got unbelievable pace and power and the two of them together would be really exciting.

"To have a right-footed centre-back and a left-footed centre-back who are both great athletes, both with great pace and power and both in their early 20s, if you are building a Premier League team and are looking for centre-backs then they are two who are going to be right up there in my opinion."

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