STEVEN GERRARD is confident Kemar Roofe will be up to speed sooner rather than later after making his Rangers debut on Wednesday night.

The striker was a second half substitute during the 3-0 win over St Johnstone that took Gerrard's side top of the Premiership standings with three wins from three games.

Fellow new arrival Cedric Itten was also given a run-out and Gerrard is keen to get as many minutes as possible into his players to ensure they are all at the required levels of match sharpness.

He said: "Roofe needs minutes. I said the other day that he is ten days or a couple of weeks behind the group.

"But he picks up clever positions and gets shots off early. It’s only a matter of time before we see the real Kemar when he is 100 per cent fit, sharp and match ready.

"We are pushing him hard in training. He probably did extra in training [on Tuesday] because we knew this would just be a cameo. Thankfully we could get him 30 minutes.

"We have a game behind closed doors next week for the likes of Kemar and we’ll do everything we can to get him up to speed.

"I normally get criticised for waiting too long and not making enough subs.

"We had that luxury tonight but sometimes it can affect the rhythm and the style. It did, so I played a part in that.

"But the players know that a Rangers team 3-0 up has to show a little bit more style and class. I thought we were very sloppy."