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Five youngsters who could make the breakthrough in 2017

With 2017 only a few days old and Rangers on the brink of making their first signing of the January window, it’s time to take a look at a few of the Auchenhowie prospects that could make the breakthrough over the next 12 months.

Rangers Media Access Photo by Jeff Holmes/Getty Images

Liam Burt

We’ll start off with an obvious one here. Burt has been the only Auchenhowie starlet to make the breakthrough under Mark Warburton so far and is tipped for a bright future at Ibrox. The young midfielder has already made a handful of appearances for the senior side but has been crucial to Graeme Murty’s Development squad (scoring five times in his last four games) and has even found himself in the Scotland U21 side in recent times. A direct, attack-minded midfielder, Burt will he hoping to kick on and make a regualr first-team spot for himself.

Billy Gilmour

Still only 15, Gilmour has attracted interest from Chelsea, Barcelona, Bayern Munich and both Manchester giants before he can sign professional terms at Ibrox. Recently promoted to the U20 side, Gilmour looks destined for the top. Classy in possession with a fantastic eye for a pass, the young central midfielder should make the breakthrough into the senior side before long. Despite having the physique of a child (because...well...he’s still a child) Gilmour has stil stood-out playing against senior pros like Dundee captain James McPake.

Robby McCrorie

Along with twin brother Ross, goalkeeper Robby is a vital part of the U20 backline and is another who has attracted interest from some of the biggest clubs in the world. A consistent feature between the sticks for Graeme Murty’s side, McCrorie could find himself out on loan in the January window to get some more first team experience as he looks to make the breakthrough. With Liam Kelly impressing on loan at Livingston, McCrorie may feel a need to get out and impress so he doesn’t slide down the pecking order.

Ross McCrorie

Captain of the Development side and a regular for Scotland U19s, Ross McCrorie has spent the bulk of this season playing in a slightly less familiar right back role to accommodate David Bates and Aidan Wilson in central defence. Bates is due to return to parent club Raith Rovers imminently so it could see McCrorie return to central defence. Comfortable in possession and happy to go forward in support of the attackers, McCrorie could be a feature of Rangers’ defence for years to come.

Myles Beerman

The Maltese former Man City youth has immediately impressed after joining the club in August. Making the left back berth his own in Murty’s side, Beerman has given an extra attacking dimension to the U20s and can play anywhere on the left side of the pitch. Great going forward, Beerman is just as confident defensively and is viewed by some as a long term successor to Lee Wallace. Beerman’s attack-mindedness would mesh well with Barrie McKay in the senior side and at only 17 years old has time on his side to continue his development.

Honourable mentions must also go to Zak Rudden, Jamie Barjonas and Jack Thomson with all three looking like fantastic prospects coming through the Academy. Rudden has been lethal infront of goal this season for both the U20 and U17 sides while midfielders Barjonas and Thomson have both consistently impressed in the U20s despite being much younger than many of their opponents.

What do you think? Could any others make the step up this year and emulate Barrie McKay’s route to the first team?