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Dan Deacon

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Decent wee piece on him leaving.

The rainbow is over as trickster Nathan Oduwa exits Ibrox
Nathan Oduwa has returned to Tottenham after his Rangers loan stay concluded early. Picture: SNS
01:41Monday 18 January 2016

A player who whipped up a storm of controversy so soon into his Ibrox career has exited five months prematurely after quietly nipping out of the back door, as Craig Fowler writes

Nathan Oduwa got the whole of Scottish football talking when, minutes into his debut after coming on as a substitute against Alloa, he attempted a rainbow flick over Wasps’ full back Colin Hamilton.

The controversy was much ado about nothing. There wouldn’t have been anything said about it afterwards had Hamilton not given the press the perfect back page headline by accusing the Tottenham loanee of ‘taking the p***’ before warning that defenders in the second tier wouldn’t stand for such bravado on the pitch - which was an odd thing for Hamilton to say seeing as he had ample opportunity to carry out such threats himself instead of waiting to air his grievances in the post-match presser.

READ MORE - Nathan Oduwa ends Rangers loan and returns to Tottenham

In the end this one piece of play summarised Oduwa’s time with Rangers. It was short, it was good to watch, but ultimately it didn’t lead to anything. The winger was an exciting talent even on a team as aesthetically pleasing as the current Rangers outfit, but it says a lot that a 36-year-old Kenny Miller, either on the right himself or pushing striker Martyn Waghorn out to the wing due to his inclusion up front, was a more effective option for manager Mark Warburton.

That’s not to say Oduwa didn’t have his moments. This writer was forced into making several involuntary noises by his performance in Rangers’ 5-0 victory over Raith Rovers earlier in the season. His quick feet and bag of tricks bamboozled the opposing defence and he deservedly picked up the man of the match award at the game’s end.

At this point it seemed the perfect match. Oduwa, like any young player on loan, needed to play regular football and Rangers, with their thin squad, needed another option in attack. But instead of being a precursor to an unforgettable season where he would dazzle and rack up goals and assists, the Raith match was to be his apex in a Rangers shirt.

While never poor on the football, he often struggled to impose himself on games and was marginalised further against some of the tougher opponents. That was to be expected. He’s a 19-year-old winger. Inconsistency is going to be par for the course as he learns how to benefit the team even when he’s not getting any joy against the opposing full back.

READ MORE - Rangers are best side in Championship, says Peter Houston

What he needed was a situation where his quieter games could be tolerated and he would get to keep his place in the side. Instead, Rangers’ apparent canter towards the second tier title quickly turned into a three-way battle for promotion, and subdued performances were scrutinised further.

In fairness to Warburton he continued to show faith in the player, but the telling moment came when he was substituted off in the 2-1 defeat at Falkirk. While he may have crossed for the opening goal, Rangers’ display as a team improved when Miller came on in his place. The veteran’s spot above him in the pecking order was then cemented following the crucial win against Hibernian eight days later.

With Michael O’Halloran apparently on his way from St Johnstone, Oduwa’s chances were only going to be limited further and it was the right decision for his development to return to London and search for a new club.

Time will tell whether he can become the next Jay Rodriguez, Tim Krul or Kasper Schmeichel and go on to have a strong career in the English Premier League following a stint north of the border. Either way, hopefully his Scottish adventure hasn’t diminished his love of the odd rainbow flick.

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I think the boy had problems outside football, he played with a smile on his face then something changed. I'm not buying the harsh treatment thing as if he wants to make it at a big club he has to get the head down and get on with it. Maybe he was homesick or whatever. Good luck to him anyway in whatever he does, he put a smile on my wee boys face with his tricks.

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I'd say he entertained, but was pretty ineffective shown by his lack of goals.

The way we've been playing for the majority of the season, i.e. camped in the opposition half, and he still couldn't do it tells me all I need to know.

Hope he has better luck in the future.

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Only two weeks left in the transfer window. Could it be that Sours have another loan spell lined up for him at another club where he will get more playing time and be less susceptible to physical assault?

Could well be they maybe watched a few of the games and thought he's lucky to still be playing after some of the tackles.

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The statement from the Club about his loan spell ending was blunt. Terse even. Unnecessarily so. Disappointing piece of public relations from the Club. The player entertained and in my opinion deserved a fuller and warmer farewell message than the one the Club could grudgingly muster. A poor way to say thanks for your efforts.

..................even if there had been some sort of an issue behind the scenes that created disfavour in the player its still seems churlish to print that sort of farewell. I guess the Press might well push MW a bit on why he was released and why so sparse a thanks. If so, the Club brought it on themselves.

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Was our talisman in September and October, then by November began to look like he'd never seen a football before

Desperately short of confidence and looked unhappy in recent weeks. The short snippet on our website suggests the club didn't want him to go but he pushed for it

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