PLAYER-COACH Jermain Defoe is back with Rangers – but for now his focus is getting himself fully prepared as a footballer before taking his first steps on the coaching side.
Defoe, who captained Gers in the first half of the friendly with Partick Thistle, made the move to his new role over the summer, and he can’t wait to learn from the current Light Blues management setup.
He was speaking exclusively to RangersTV, with your club channel, app, official website and social media outlets being the only place to follow the Light Blues this pre-season.
Defoe told RangersTV: "So far it has been more as a player, focusing on pre-season and making sure I get a good pre-season and I am fit and ready to go.
"In-terms of the coaching side of it, at some point, I will get introduced the manager has said and maybe have the red kit on!
"I am really looking forward to it. It is something we spoke about over the summer, myself, the manager, the staff and Ross [Wilson], and when the opportunity came to me, it was an easy decision.
"To do something like this at a club like this is so special. When I came back in, the staff said to me to concentrate on being a player and not to focus too much on the other side - just focus on being a player.
"I have started my badges which I will hopefully finish soon, and getting this experience learning from the manager, Mick, Gary and all of the staff involved, and dipping in and out of sessions hopefully - probably more on the finishing side of it I would imagine.
"But dipping in and out of sessions, and I would love the opportunity to go over to the other side and do a bit with the younger lads as well - that next generation which would be good and give me a good feeling, so I am looking forward to that as well."
Defoe also went onto discuss his journey into coaching, adding: "I have always thought about the coaching side of things - even when I was at Sunderland I did a little bit and I always used to take the younger forwards after training.
"So even then, I was doing a little bit without even knowing really - it was an ‘off the cuff’ sort of thing where I would give them some advice and do loads of shooting.
"It is always something I have thought about, and it is stuff I have enjoyed doing and to give back the experience I have got gives me a good feeling and I think when you love football like I do, something like this is special."