New Rangers manager Michael Beale got to watch his squad in action for the first time on Saturday and after his first 90 minutes at the helm, the 42-year-old is excited to continue working with one of his young attacking talents.
Malik Tillman scored two goals for Rangers in a 3-0 victory over Bayer Leverkusen, setting the stage for what the Bayern Munich loanee hopes is a impactful second half of the season. The 20-year-old arrived in Glasgow in September and has scored four goals in his opening 23 appearances for the club.
Tillman has featured in the UEFA Champions League and Scottish Premiership this season, showing off his versatility in a number of ways for the club. With Rangers looking to get back into the title race picture and compete for domestic silverware over the next six months, Beale supports Tillman to play an important role in his regime as manager.
“We’re lucky to have him playing here in Scotland,” Beale said postmatch. “He’s just 20 and I think he’s got a huge future in front of him, hopefully for this football club.
“I really like Malik,” he added. “He is a fantastic talent. He wants to play slightly higher. We’re going to give him the freedom to run out of that midfield and get into the positions he was in today.”
Tillman mainly served as a bench player at Bayern Munich, but now has the freedom to continue earning first team minutes in a competitive division in Scotland. After making his U.S. men’s national team debut in June, Tillman also has a bright future on the international level, a theme he will expect to continue in 2023.
Tillman’s loan spell with Rangers is set to run through the remainder of the league season, providing additional opportunities to develop his game and compete for several trophies. There has yet to be a decision made on Tillman’s long-term future with Rangers, but Beale would be highly open to a permanent acquisition of the young attacker.
“You can see what he could grow into to,” Beale said. “He’s the exact type of player that we want at this football club. I don’t know the exact fee, I don’t know where we’re going to go and get it from, but if we can do it, I would definitely sign Malik Tillman, yes.”