Rangers’ new attacker Greg Stewart has recently spoken about returning to Kilmarnock for the first time since leaving Ayrshire in January.
The ex-Birmingham City man jumped ship in January after City recalled him from his Rugby Park loan spell. He then joined Aberdeen, which soured his relationship with the Ayrshire club a bit.
He recently spoke to the Scottish Sun about returning to Rugby Park: “I haven’t been back to Kilmarnock since I left the club but I am sure I will get a good reception.
“It is a difficult game for us — but they all will be to begin with.”
Not a bad reception, not a ‘good reception’ for Stewart
There’s no doubting that the attacker was brilliant for Steve Clarke’s side in the first half of 2018/19. He was arguably their most influential attacker and was a thorn in most teams’ side.
When he departed for Pittodrie, his impact was missed initially. Over the course of the second half of the season though, Killie managed to get by without him. They eventually reached the European places, showing Stewart wasn’t that big of a miss in the end.
Will he get a ‘good reception’ like he thinks he’ll get? Probably not. For one he is playing for Rangers. Fans of any team outwith the two sides in Glasgow are sometimes disappointed when former players go on to play for the big two.
Secondly, the way he left Kilmarnock wasn’t great. Not in terms of he was speaking ill of the club on his departure or anything, it was the move that he made.
Killie are arguably having a better time of it just now than Aberdeen are. Given the success he was having at Rugby Park, why did he not just return to Ayrshire if it was a loan? Instead he opted for the Dons and had a miserable second half of 2018/19.
Stewart seemed to indicate that he thought he was bigger than Killie with his move. It turns out he probably needed them more than Killie needed him when everything is said and done.
He’s got his big move now though, and after the second half of last season, fair play to him. When he returns to Rugby Park, will he be hounded out the door? Probably not, but he certainly won’t be greeted with open arms.