Former Rangers man takes first steps into coaching with Premier League side

Ex-Rangers ace Sone Aluko. Ex-Rangers ace Sone Aluko.
Ex-Rangers ace Sone Aluko. | Getty Images
The ex-Rangers attacker has recently announced his retirement from the game

Former Rangers attacker Sone Aluko has become the new first-team coach at Ipswich Town.

The 35-year-old, who is from London, hung up his boots earlier this summer and has now delved into the coaching world for the first time.

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Aluko was on the books at Rangers from 2011 to 2012 and scored 12 goals in 23 games for the Glasgow side in all competitions.

He has told Ipswich’s website: “It is a real privilege to start the next phase of my career by joining the first -team coaching staff here at the Club. Learning from the Manager (Kieran McKenna) and all the coaching staff here is a fantastic opportunity for me.

“It is a great time to be at Ipswich, and I'm really looking forward to helping the squad continue to learn and take on the challenge of the Premier League.”

Kieran McKenna said: “We’re delighted to add Sone to our coaching team.

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“His work ethic and values have been important for the Club over the last few years, and we know he will continue to bring those qualities to his new role.

“Sone has strong relationships with players and staff at the Club and he will be a big addition for us.”

He isn’t the only new member of the coaching team at Ipswich, with ex-Millwall and West Ham goalkeeper David Martin also moving to Portman Road.

Aluko rose up through the ranks at Birmingham City and played once for the Blues’ first-team before loan spells away at Blackpool and Aberdeen. The latter subsequently snapped him up permanently before he moved on to Rangers.

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He was a useful player for the Gers during his time at Ibrox but left for Hull City.

The former Nigeria international became a key player for the Tigers and helped them gain promotion to the top flight in his first year in East Yorkshire under Steve Bruce. They then reached the FA Cup final a year later but were beaten by Arsenal at Wembley.

He played 108 matches for Hull and fired 14 goals.

Stints down south at Fulham and Reading then followed on for him, as well as a brief spell in China at Beijing Chengfeng, before Ipswich landed him in 2021.

They were in League One when he first got there and he has helped them rise up two leagues now. He was a regular during his first two campaigns but saw his game time dry up last term.

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Aluko’s contract expired in late June and he made the decision to retire. He said: "I couldn't think of a better place to end my career.

"From top to bottom the Club is amazing, and it has been a privilege to be here. I've not played as much as I would have liked, but this has still been the best year of my career.

"All of the lads, I love every one of you, even you, Harry Clarke." 

The ex-Rangers favourite has now linked up with McKenna’s backroom staff as he gears up for a new challenge.

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