RANGERS confirmed their first three friendlies ahead of the new campaign this week and Oxford United, Marseille and Blackburn Rovers will all visit Ibrox next month.

All of those games should be decent tests for Rangers as they look to progress through the Europa League qualifiers and gear up for the Premiership.

The squad has obviously still to be finalised in terms of who is coming in and who will be going out but Steven Gerrard will have plenty of players there that will need a bit of game time.

He won’t just pick his first choice side for the first game and then run with that through the qualifiers, so he needs everyone to be up to speed and to be ready to come in.

The supporters will get a chance to see how the team are shaping up and to welcome the new players to Ibrox as well and those three fixtures will certainly be beneficial.

Steven needs to find out early on who has hit the ground running so that Rangers can progress through the rounds in Europe.

And, of course, they will need to start really well in the Premiership and show that they mean business in the title race next season.

There may well be closed door games within the schedule as well once the team are back from their training camp this month.

It is no use having some players only getting half an hour here or there. You need 90 minute games and I wouldn’t be surprised to see games being played at the Hummel Training Centre or other fixtures being lined up as well.

Steven will have learned a lot from his first pre-season and he will use that experience wisely this summer.