Greg Docherty hopes to catch Steven Gerrard’s eye during Shrewsbury Town loan
Shrewsbury No.8 Greg Docherty is aiming to impress a man who made that digit his own during a legendary career.
Rangers boss Steven Gerrard gave his young midfielder his blessing to go and get game-time under his belt, to develop and improve.
Docherty, 21, was on the bench for Shrewsbury’s last game, but has made an early impression on fans at Montgomery Waters Meadow with some purposeful displays.
Liverpool legend Gerrard, who was unbeaten in 12 games in all competitions as Gers boss before the weekend’s 1-0 Old Firm defeat, told Docherty that regular reports will be sent to Ibrox on his progress.
But ambitious Docherty, who joined boyhood club Rangers from Hamilton in January, wants to build on the 14 first-team appearances he made last term and become a regular fixture.
“I could’ve stayed at Rangers,” he said. “I’d have been more of a squad player myself but I know if I really want to be that top player, like he was, then I need to take a year out, push on and go back again,” said the energetic box-to-box midfield man.
“But for my development I knew this was the right platform. It was a difficult decision, I wasn’t under pressure to leave Rangers.
“I wanted to go, I was allowed to go and I pushed it myself to go and try something different.
“I wanted to dip my toe in the water down here. It could be the only time I leave Glasgow, I want to be a successful Rangers player.
“It might not be. It might open a few doors. You never know.
“Hopefully the manager has taken notice and from what he’s told me so far, he will be.”
Docherty, born and raised in Milngavie, six miles from Glasgow centre, explained the wave of excitement that flooded through the club when it was announced Gerrard would make his senior management bow at Ibrox.
But he revealed that the former England international and Champions League winner brought refreshing honesty as he settled in.
Docherty added: “It came out of nowhere, but there was excitement. Everyone was desperate for the season to start and to get in and impress.
“He was very honest when he spoke to us as a group. We’re judging him and he’s judging us. It’s his first real manager’s job, we’re all on the same page and it settled the nerves.
“Right away he was very open and approachable. I think it’s going to be a successful year for Rangers and he’s got a good career in management ahead of him.”
Will Gerrard make a trip to the Meadow for a scouting mission? “I hope so! He’s told me he’ll be watching and there’ll be people to see me. Everything I do will be reported back.
“He said it’s not ‘Greg is going out the picture’, it was that he’s still looking at me and I’m still part of his long-term plans.
“He’s allowed me to push on here, express myself and help me develop.”