Jon Toral has faced harsh criticism from Rangers fans since he joined the Scottish Premiership team on loan in January.
The midfielder, who had his loan spell at La Liga club Granada cut short after he failed to get hardly any playing time, was heavily criticised after Rangers lost to Inverness Caledonian Thistle at the end of February. However, the 22-year-old from Barcelona’s academy insists that he’s not been on top of his game because he’s not been fully fit.
Ahead of Rangers’ Scottish Cup quarter-final clash against Hamilton Academica, Toral explained,“Physically in the first few games I wasn’t fit enough, I wasn’t match fit.
“The manager knew as well I needed a few games and he gave me those games.
“I think physically I’ve improved and I’ve felt better. Now in the last few games I’ve played in a different position as well, as I’ve been used to in my other teams, and played in a little bit deeper role.
“I’m just trying to learn from that and if the manager sees me there just try to help the team in that position. I’m getting used to it and feel I am getting better and match-fit. I hope that continues and I get better.
“I always hope when I go on the football pitch there is more to come from me and I hope, because I’m very critical of myself, the next game will be better than the one before and that will be [the case] for the rest of my career.”
Since speaking honestly about his fitness, Toral has in fact scored his first goal for Rangers during his loan side’s 6-0 thrashing over Hamilton Academica and also claimed an assist. This was the Spaniard’s eighth appearance since joining but only his third full match so he’ll be hoping to not only continue to build his fitness but get back in Graeme Murty’s starting lineup.
It’s good to see he’s improving.