Butland matched by only one keeper in 30 years

Butland matched by only one keeper in 30 years

Rangers goalkeeper Jack Butland claps his hands
Butland joining on a free transfer has proved an outstanding piece of recruitment by Rangers

Philippe Clement has praised Jack Butland’s leadership and says he is matched by only one goalkeeper he has played with or managed in 30 years.

The Rangers boss says only ex-Liverpool goalkeeper Simon Mignolet is as good as Butland of those he has worked with.

Clement believes the 30-year-old is ready for an England recall.

“Over more than 30 years, Jack together with Simon are the two best I have met. He is a really, really top-class goalkeeper for me,” said Clement.

“He almost didn’t have a downfall [make a mistake] in all of our four months together.

“He is a top goalkeeper but also a top personality, because you can be a really good goalkeeper but not be a leader in the dressing room – but Simon and Jack both are.

“They’re quite similar – they have some specific different qualities but they’re both leaders with a lot of authority. But really natural, not forced.”

Rangers rejected an approach in the January transfer window from a Premier League club for in-form Butland, who joined the Ibrox club on a four-year contract last summer after being released by Crystal Palace.

England manager Gareth Southgate has confirmed he is being considered for a recall as a result of his outstanding performances for Rangers this season.

Butland, who has nine caps, has not been called up since June 2019, but is back “on the radar” after impressing England goalkeeping coach Martyn Margetson.

Jordan Pickford’s back-ups Sam Johnstone and Aaron Ramsdale are out of favour at Palace and Arsenal respectively while Newcastle United’s Nick Pope is injured.

“If people are talking about being in the England squad, that says enough – because England will be one of the favourites to win [Euro 2024],” added former Belgium defender Clement.

“It is the decision of Mr Southgate. He knows all the other goalkeepers, I don’t watch all these games, so I cannot make comparison, but I can say one thing, Jack is totally ready – every game he is proving that.”


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