MX23RW : Sunday, September 23 20:30:34

Glenn Middleton hoping to impress Rangers boss Steven Gerrard

Glenn Middleton admits that he was shocked to be handed his Rangers debut against Shkupi but is confident of cementing a place in the first-team squad.

Glenn Middleton has expressed his desire to nail down a first-team spot at Rangers after making his club debut in the Europa League win against Macedonia's Shkupi.

With Rangers leading 1-0 thanks to Jamie Murphy's first-half strike, manager Steven Gerrard introduced the 18-year-old with 11 minutes left in Thursday's qualifier.

Middleton admitted that he did not expect to play a part in Gerrard's competitive managerial debut but now hopes to impress his boss enough to ensure that his runout is not a one-off.

"Yes, it did," the teenager told Sky Sports News when asked if his involvement had come as a surprise. "Not many people are sure what to expect when a new manager comes into a club, no matter who it is. It's just a case of trying to take your opportunity when it is given to you.

"I've only played 15 minutes of first-team football so far, so it's not much but I just need to keep building from here, show him what I can do in training every day and if I get the opportunity in games take it from there and show what I'm capable of.

"Am I confident I can break into the side? Yes, I think anyone would be lying if they said they weren't. It's the same for all the young boys, we come in every day, show him what we can do and hopefully get our names on the team sheet as soon as possible.

"It's about taking it day by day, that's the manager's message to everyone and me personally - just do what I can every day to show what I'm capable of."

The second leg of the tie between Rangers and Shkupi takes place in Skopje on Tuesday, July 17.

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New Rangers boss Steven Gerrard speaks to the media at his press conference on May 4, 2018
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