JOE Worrall knew he was going to be in the spotlight at Rangers, but he didn’t appreciate quite how intense that scrutiny would be until a glaring error placed him front and centre of attention.

The young centre-back, who is at Ibrox on a season-long loan from Nottingham Forest, had a howler at Kilmarnock a fortnight ago. Caught on the ball by Eamon Brophy, he allowed the forward to score the goal that not only got his side back into a game that Rangers led and had dominated, but ultimately gave them the platform to go on and win.

The 22-year-old admits it was difficult to get his head back in the game on the night, but feels the experience has only made him stronger, as evidenced in the wins that have followed against Livingston, St Mirren and Aberdeen. His performance at Pittodrie, indeed, was described by manager Steven Gerrard as "top drawer".

“The mistake I made at Rugby Park was disappointing,” said Worrall. “But everyone makes them. On that day it was me and I held my hand up. But I'm a strong enough character, as I've shown in the games since. I've bounced back and put in solid performances like I know I can.

“I'm not someone who'll shy away from the limelight or making errors. There will be other players who make mistakes over the course of the season.

“I don't mind taking the flak for the Kilmarnock one. I've came back and shown what I'm capable of. It's hard to get your head back on the game at the time, especially when the crowd's booing as you're on the ball. But it's part of football and everyday life. You make a mistake and get on with it. You can't do anything about it, so you just have to crack on.”

As sanguine as he now is about the blooper at Kilmarnock, he does concede it was difficult having one of his errors so heavily scrutinised for the first time in his career.

“It's a minor thing but it gets blown out of proportion when you're going for a league with Rangers,” he said. “I've made many mistakes at Forest but it's different up here because you're fighting for a title. We've not done that at Forest for the last few years. If you make a mistake down there, you're still sitting mid-table and it's forgotten about in a few days.

“Here, it sticks with you. I'm sure the fans will point the finger again at some point in the season, but I'll just get on with it.

“The gaffer has shown trust in me to keep my place. I'd like to think I've rewarded him in our last few games.

“The scrutiny up here has been a bit of a shock to the system. Not just my mistake but the whole media coverage. It's huge. Everything is scrutinised, it's a goldfish bowl. But I love it, it's good and I'm well up for that challenge.”

Amid the frenzy of finger-pointing that followed that defeat at Rugby Park, Worrall tried to maintain at least a modicum of perspective. While realising he has chosen a harsh environment to come into to make his mistakes, he knows it is a key period in his development as a player.

“That's the reason I'm here, to make mistakes,” he said. “It's part of my development. People forget I'm only 22, still a young lad learning. I'm trying to get experience and learn off some of the older lads in the dressing-room.

“A couple of lads put their arm round me [after the mistake] but I didn't need telling. Big Gaz McAuley spoke to me, he said he'd scored an own goal in the Euros. So, I said, fair enough!

“It's [been] a strange month. You come off the high of the Celtic game when you're a God. Then you make a mistake against Kilmarnock and you should be booted back to England. That's what football's about, that's how the fans view it and it spurs you on to challenge for the title.”

So, having shaken off the recent past, what of the future? Has the change of management at Nottingham Forest, with the arrival of former Celtic boss Martin O’Neill, opened the door for him once more at his parent club? Or might he be looking to extend his stay at Ibrox?

"I'm not thinking about the future,” he said. “I'm loving Rangers, it's a fantastic football club and it has a massive place in my heart at the moment.

“Being on loan, it's hard to say whether I want to stay. I came in August on deadline and said I'd be happy to play for Rangers for the season. The lads have all been great and I'm loving living in Glasgow, I think it's brilliant. But as far as signing permanently, I'm on loan. If they want to buy me permanently for £30 million in the summer, fantastic! If not, I'll be happy to go back to Forest.”