Templeton focus on Rangers

BY foxsports • July 23, 2013

Porto striker Jackson Martinez has ruled out a move away from the club and is targeting more glory with the Portuguese champions.

Despite only making the switch to Portugal last summer, the Colombian striker has been a revelation for The Dragons, scoring an impressive 26 league goals in his debut season.

And it is this form that has attracted interest from across Europe, with Napoli and Borussia Dortmund touted as potential suitors.

"I am happy to be here at a club like this," Martinez told Radio Renascenca.

"I am enjoying the opportunity to play here, I want to repeat what happened last season and win more trophies with Porto."

Napoli president Aurelio De Laurentiis insisted that Martinez's Colombian team-mate Camilo Zuniga will not be leaving the club.

The 27-year-old has been linked with a move to Serie A champions Juventus, but De Laurentiis affirmed that Zuniga will remain in Naples next season.

"Zuniga is a Napoli player," he said on his Twitter account.

"He gave a lot to the jersey and he will continue doing it."

The winger swapped life in the Scottish Premier League with Hearts for a drop down to the Third Division when he joined the Light Blues last summer.

And the 24-year-old, who represented his country at Under-19 and Under-21 level, accepts that his Scotland career is probably on hold until Rangers are back in the top flight.

Templeton said: "When I signed here, I gave up all hope on the Scotland squad for the first few years.

"If we do get back to the top level, and I'm playing regularly, maybe then I'll get a sniff."

However, Templeton is surprised that club-mate Lee Wallace has missed out on the chance to face England next month.

The Gers left-back has been called up by Gordon Strachan in the past, while playing in the bottom tier, but failed to make the squad named yesterday for the clash at Wembley on August 14.

Templeton added: "Lee has been consistent for years now and I'm quite surprised he is not in the squad just now.

"I think he's good enough to play for Scotland. Not a problem.

"It's unfortunate for him that he's not been called in."

While his own international aspirations remain on ice, Templeton has the added frustration of being out of action for Rangers as well at the moment as he recovers from a thigh injury.

But, as he helped to promote a friendly against Newcastle on August 6, he targeted a return to action in time for the English club's visit to Ibrox.

He said: "I'm not fit yet but I'm hoping by the time this game comes around I'll have a bit of game-time and be able to play part of the game and get my match fitness up.

"I had done a week of pre-season and went into the crossing after doing the running and I strained my thigh.

"It was just a niggly one and I've had to be careful with what I'm doing so that I don't make it worse and tear it.

"Now I'm just trying to get my fitness back and doing a bit of extra running after training."

Rangers' competitive campaign begins this weekend when they take on Albion Rovers in the first round of the Ramsdens Cup.

But it is the other two cup competitions which could potentially provide the return of the Old Firm derby this season if the two rivals are paired together.

And, despite the gulf in divisions, Templeton insists a meeting with Celtic this term would hold no fear.

He said: "Celtic are really strong just now but you don't know how strong you are until you do play against them.

"If we do, we wouldn't be scared to play them.

"Last season, we beat Motherwell rather convincingly [in the League Cup] and they were up at the top of the table at that time.

"With the signings the gaffer has made this year, it has made us a lot stronger and I think he's still trying to get a few more.

"I think we do have a strong enough squad. Depending on who he brings in, it's just going to make us stronger."