Allan McGregor’s form for Rangers this season has left his manager Steven Gerrard ruing Liverpool’s failure to ever sign the goalkeeper at his peak.
The veteran goalkeeper, 36, has rolled back the years this season with some phenomenal performances between the sticks and was at his best on Thursday evening to keep LaLiga outfit Villarreal at bay in their Europa League encounter.
And his display left Gerrard to sing McGregor’s praises – but also regretting the fact that he never played alongside the former Besiktas and Hull custodian when he was at the top of his powers at Liverpool.
Gerrard said: “I don’t think it’s luck, although we have rode our luck at times in certain games.
“Of course we have, but you’ve got to. However, those two saves by Allan McGregor were down to talent and ability.
“For me, he is the best shotstopper up here. He is right up with the best when it comes down to one-v-ones and shot-stopping.
“I remember watching Allan in a lot of Old Firm games for many years. As a Liverpool player, you are thinking, ‘I wouldn’t mind a bit of him’.
“Not just on talent and ability, but as a leader and a person. You can see a lot when you watch players.
“McGregor was good enough to play in the top six down in England, no doubt about it.”
McGregor, now in his second spell at Ibrox, will be back in action on Sunday when Rangers take on Hearts.
Gerrard added: “Every league game is the same. You get three points out of it, and Hearts is the same.
“It will be tough because they have been flying in the league and it’s a test and a challenge.
“But this month was always going to be a tough test for us, especially Hearts on the back of a European game.
“We go in with confidence and look forward to the game. It will be tough. Craig Levein has got his team flying high.
“They have had some injuries of late which has probably affected their form, but they have still had a fantastic season so far.
“We’re under no illusions it will be a tough game. It’s an intense crowd which is close to the pitch.”
Get the latest personalised Gers products on our new TEAMtalk Rangers shop!