Fabio Silva 'rejected' Celtic transfer option as decision to join Rangers on loan explained by dad Jorge

Fabio Silva of Rangers has returned to parent club Wolves at the end of his loan spell at IbroxFabio Silva of Rangers has returned to parent club Wolves at the end of his loan spell at Ibrox
Fabio Silva of Rangers has returned to parent club Wolves at the end of his loan spell at Ibrox | Getty Images
The versatile Wolves attacker spent six months at Ibrox but his father has revealed he could have signed for the Hoops

Rangers loanee Fabio Silva passed up the chance to join arch rivals Celtic, according to his father.

The Wolves attacker was advised to join the Hoops on loan in the January transfer window because he was Catholic, but instead didn’t left that affect his decision and opted for a six-month spell at Ibrox. He scored six goals in 25 appearances but was unable to help Philippe Clement’s side reclaim the Premiership title or the Scottish Cup and was heavily criticised by some fans for a number of his performances.

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The Portuguese under-21 international - who has since returned to Molineux at the end of his temporary stint - was snapped up by Wolves for a whopping £35million from Porto back in 2020. But he failed to win over the Gers support and was accused of simulation on more than one occasion while also appearing to hit back at his critics whilst celebrating a goal.

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But his father Jorge has leapt to his son’s defence, claiming the flak he had to contend with was unjustified. And he revealed Silva had the opportunity to sign for the Hoops but rejected a potential switch because he had his heart set on Rangers. Speaking to the Daily Record, Jorge Silva said: “At the beginning, Fabio had the opportunity to choose other clubs, even in Scotland. Could he have gone to Celtic? Yes, he could have gone there. Many people told him to go there because the way they play is maybe closer to Fabio’s abilities. But he chose Rangers.

“People spoke to us about his religion because he’s a Catholic but Fabio doesn’t show that to everyone. Even so, he told me as his father that he just wanted to play for Rangers.”

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While admitting he held Gers supporters in high regard, Jorge insists his son felt some of the criticism aimed towards him was over the top and couldn’t understand why a small section of the club’s fanbase turned on him so quickly. His theatrics, in particular, during the penultimate Old Firm league clash against Celtic at Ibrox thrust him into the spotlight for all the wrong reasons as talk of a permanent transfer lingered.

“Fabio loved the club and the fans,” he said. “He just doesn’t understand that after one game (Old Firm derby), everyone changed and went against the boy. It was a good time for him at Rangers. All the staff there helped him.

“But when I was at the cup final recently, people found out I was his father and said to me, ‘Tell him not to dive.’ I know that’s just emotion and football but I don’t understand it. I don’t understand why old players from Rangers – and even some of the fans – criticised him after the Celtic game. It was a huge match but Rangers did nothing before Fabio won the penalty.

“He put them into the game yet afterwards everyone was against him. I don’t understand that. Whenever Fabio had the ball he always went at his opponent (Alistair Johnston) one v one and he provoked situations. He created another goal for the team and it was offside. But the supporters seemed to be against him afterwards.”

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