Glasgow Rangers yesterday confirmed the signing of young Blackpool striker Tony Weston for an undisclosed fee, as reported by the Blackpool Gazette.
The Ibrox giants have snared the 16-year-old on a two-year deal for a fee which is believed to be in the region of £250,000.
The Liverpool-born youngster had already made his first-team debut for the Tangerines, appearing in the FA Cup against Maidstone and his move will disappoint a number of possible suitors. There had been talk of a move to the English top-flight, as the Telegraph had reported Southampton were coveting his signature back in December, with a deal falling through.
Leeds United and Everton have also missed out after being linked with the youngster, as Steven Gerrard moved quickly to bag the talented prospect. The striker had been in excellent form for the Tangerines’ youth team, netting 14 goals before Simon Grayson involved him in the first-team plans. He has also won numerous academy Player of the Year awards throughout his time at Bloomfield Road.
Craig Mullholland, Head of Academy, told Rangers’ website: “We are really pleased that Tony will join Rangers when international clearance is received.
“Given the high level of interest from several clubs, it is further testimony to the development programme we can now offer, that Tony has chosen Rangers. Successful cross border player trading is important at all levels of the club and our recruitment team are doing a terrific job in identifying and securing talent.
“Tony is a player who our scouts have been working on for some time and he has a burning desire to be successful and play for a club like Rangers which is absolutely critical.”
Fans of both Blackpool and Rangers have been reacting overnight to the news on Twitter, with the pick of their responses outlined below.
Not really understanding the lad moving up to Scotland I would of thought he’d be better getting in our first team then moving on to the premier league could get lost in there in there set up big gamble in my book probably his agent after a pay day time will tell .
— stephen john gane (@ganejohn) July 31, 2020
I reckon he’s more of a chance up here than in Blackpool, he could potentially be called up to the first team to play in European ties etc as we only have one striker currently
— Stuart™️®️ (@StuartyC3) July 31, 2020
Not the clubs fault. In England you have to be 17 to sign a pro contract. In Scotland it’s 17. That needs looking at as it leads to English clubs losing young players like this.
Good luck to the lad.
— Athers (@AthersBFC) July 31, 2020
Disappointing. Losing young talent is never a positive.
— ? BIG G ??????? (@Gradderz_78) July 31, 2020
Don’t have a choice if he wants to leave
— dave whiteside (@whiteside92) July 31, 2020
Don't forget to retire his shirt number ?
— ??????? ?????????? (@realAWashington) July 31, 2020
Good luck Tony, a shame you didn't see your future at Blackpool but the draw of Gerrard and Rangers is understandable. ?????
— Sean Brookes (@53BFC53) July 31, 2020