Todd Cantwell has spoken for the first time about being substituted in the first half of the Europa League game against Aris Limassol this season and revealed that he held talks with Rangers manager Philippe Clement about the “tough moment” afterwards.

However, the playmaker stressed that he has no difficulties parking his “ego” and putting the team first and emphasised that he has a strong relationship with as well as the utmost respect for Clement ahead of the Celtic game on Sunday.

The Englishman was hooked by his Belgian coach nine minutes before half-time and replaced by young winger Ross McCausland in the Group C encounter with Aris at Ibrox back in November.

Being taken off in the first half of a game is considered to be the ultimate indignity for a professional footballer and the technically gifted forward confessed that it had been a difficult experience for him to leave the field at that stage.

But Rangers were trailing their Cypriot rivals 1-0 at the time and Clement wanted to more width in his team. So he put on McCausland and the Northern Ireland internationalist scored a second half equaliser to secure a vital point for the hosts.

Cantwell, who had given the ball away to the visitors shortly before Shavy Babicka had broken the deadlock, spoke to his manager in the aftermath of a 1-1 draw which guaranteed European football after Christmas.

But he stated that he had put the incident firmly behind him and was enjoying helping the Viaplay Cup winners in their bid to complete a world record-equalling eighth domestic treble.

“No player wants to be that player,” he said. “Listen, me and the manager have had a lot of conversations and I have got a lot of respect for the manager. I think he is a good person as well as a good manager.

“For me personally, in football you have to hide your ego a little bit sometimes and you have to understand that things aren’t always done for your best interest, it is the club’s best interest. I think we have got a manager on our hands who cares very, very much about the club.

“I won’t go into it, but we had a very honest conversation and it was a very respectful conversation and I think it has been very positive on the pitch and off the pitch. Yeah, me and the manager are in a really good place.”

READ MORE: Todd Cantwell can become a legend by inspiring Rangers to silverware successes

Cantwell, who is set to start in his favoured position in the hugely important cinch Premiership game against defending Scottish champions Celtic at Ibrox on Sunday, has performed consistently well for Rangers in the months since the Aris game.

Asked if he thought that working with Clement had made him a better player, he said: “I think you could argue that. It is definitely a different No 10 role to the No 10 role I was playing under Michael (former Rangers manager Beale).

“But, listen, as a footballer, you have to be able to adapt and you have to bring different parts of your game. That is something the manager has really homed in on with me.

“I would like to think I do have a good attitude. The club is always more important than any individual, I believe that. It is probably more important here than at most clubs.

“For me, it is being at the right end of the trophies at the end of the season. For me, that would be a good season.”