Loaned defender James Sands has returned to his parent club (New York City FC), Rangers have confirmed on their official website.
While Sands featured semi-regularly under Giovanni Van Bronckhorst at the beginning of the season, his game time under Michael Beale has been considerably more limited. He has not been named in the starting lineup for Rangers in the Scottish Premiership since December.
He was initially signed on an 18-month loan deal back in January 2022 – as such, the deal ended four months early. The contract also included an exclusive option to buy clause – Sands’ return to the USA confirms that this clause will not be activated.
Sands scored a single goal for the club, in a Scottish FA Cup victory over Partick Thistle. He also featured in the Europa League final in 2022, where Rangers were beaten by Eintracht Frankfurt. However, he was not in the squad for the Light Blues’ recent Scottish League Cup final against Celtic, despite the Gers’ injury woes.
On Sands’ departure, Beale said: “I would like to thank James for his time at Rangers. He was a well-liked player in our squad and I enjoyed working with him on a daily basis. I believe he will go on to have an excellent career.
“The opportunity to return to NYCFC for the start of the MLS season, where he will be a key player in their squad, was something that we felt was correct for all parties. Everyone at Rangers wishes him well moving forwards.”