RYAN KENT has called several clubs home from home in recent years as he has travelled far and wide in search of improvement on the park and happiness off it.

His latest stop has perhaps been his most beneficial. For Mark Walters, the journey from Liverpool to Rangers is one the winger should make for a second time.

Stints at Coventry, Barnsley, Freiburg and Bristol City have seen Kent rise and rise in the game, but it is in Light Blue where he has really come to the fore.

His early months at Ibrox gave supporters an insight into his undoubted ability and a lack of consistency, something which is to be expected, has steadily been worked out of his game.

It was in the last Old Firm clash in December that Kent really rose to the occasion. Now he has another chance to prove his credentials on the biggest stage in Scottish football this weekend.

As a former winger for both Rangers and Liverpool, Walters has a keen interest in Kent’s fortunes and he is confident there is plenty more to come from the current Gers wide man.

“Ryan Kent played really well in the last Old Firm game,” Walters said. “Some people had said he hadn’t played as well as he could have before that – and he had some injury problems as well.

“But in that match against Celtic, he really showed what he is capable of. So did a lot of the team that day.

“I think Ryan Kent can go all the way in the game, without a doubt. He has shown some great potential.

“Looking from the outside, he appears to be a good professional. And like people with that mindset, if anything adverse happens he generally bounces back. That is the sign of a good player.

“He is still young and I feel there is a lot more of that promise to come out of him.”

The derby clash at Parkhead will see Kent make his 38th appearance of the season for Rangers and give him an opportunity to further endear himself to a support that are keen for him to remain with Gerrard’s side next term.

After a frustrating spell at Ashton Gate last season, the 22-year-old has thrived under the pressure to perform since being reunited with his former Reds mentor.

If another deal is to be done, that relationship between player and manager could have a significant part to play. It could be Rangers’ best hope of keeping Kent.

“I don’t care how good you are, if you are not playing regularly then you can’t fulfil your promise,” Walters said.

“It is better for Ryan to be with a manager who has that trust in him. Being picked is the best possible way to know that a manager has confidence in you.

“A manager can be in your ear telling you that he thinks you are a good player. But you are still not playing.

“Ryan knows that Steven Gerrard likes him and trusts him. He knows what he is about from going to back to their Liverpool days.

“For Ryan’s development, I think he should stay at Rangers beyond this season.”

Little was known about Kent when he first made the move north of the border in the summer but it took supporters little time to understand why Gerrard was as keen to bring him to Ibrox.

The England youth international still has three years left on his Anfield deal but his route to first team football is blocked by some of the finest attacking talent in the game.

“I had heard the name when he was coming through at Liverpool and saw him play in a reserve game,” Walters said.

“He always looked like he could be a player. You can generally tell those who you think can push on and make something of their career and Ryan was one of those. If not at Liverpool, then somewhere else.

“You have to remember the world-class players Liverpool have got in their attack and in those wide areas. Guys like Mo Salah and Sadio Mane are just incredible. If Liverpool are to go on and win the league this season, then they will have played a massive part in that.”

The challenge of earning a place in Liverpool’s star-studded forward line is an unenviable one and it could well prove beyond Kent in the coming months. His Reds career won’t be completely written off, though.

Another loan deal could prove to be his next step and Walters believes a return to Rangers could prove to be the best move for all parties.

“Of course, Ryan has a couple of years left on his contract at Liverpool,” he said. “But if he tells them he wants to leave then most clubs don’t want unhappy players on their books.

“If he thinks he has come as far as he can at Liverpool then I’m sure they would let him move and play elsewhere. He is not the type to be disruptive but he has to think of his own career.

“If Liverpool want to sell him, then of course the financial aspect comes into it. Can Rangers compete with some of the other clubs who might be interested?

“That’s a question only Rangers can answer. But if it’s the case that he wants a massive club and the biggest stage, then he won’t get that anywhere else other than at Ibrox.”