Braced for bids but in market for certain player - what can we expect from Rangers on transfer deadline day?
New midfielder and keeping hold of key stars the aim for Steven Gerrard
For Rangers, the closure of this year's extended and unprecedented “summer” transfer window may be as much about who they can prevent from leaving the club as it as about their efforts to make one more addition to Steven Gerrard's squad.
When the deadline comes and goes at midnight on Monday, the Rangers manager will certainly be gratified if none of his highest profile and most influential performers have been lured away from Ibrox.
Gerrard admitted at the weekend that it’s a situation which could be taken entirely out of his hands should any club meet Rangers’ valuation of any of their players or trigger release clauses in individual contracts.
Winger Ryan Kent and striker Alfredo Morelos are the most obvious targets with both players having already been the subject of sizeable bids rejected by Rangers earlier in the window. It remains to be seen if Leeds United, still believed to be keen on Kent, will improve upon the £10 million package they initially offered, and whether French club Lille, confirmed admirers of Morelos, might re-ignite their pursuit of the Colombian international after failing to tempt Rangers with an offer in the region of £16 million a few weeks ago.
Reaching the group stage of the Europa League for a third successive season has strengthened Rangers’ ability to resist cashing in on either player and even amidst the financial impact of the Covid-19 crisis, Gerrard will hope the Ibrox board continue to give him the best armoury possible for his bid to wrest the Premiership title away from Celtic this season.
To maximise his prospects of success over the coming months, both domestically and in Europe, Gerrard feels he needs to get another midfielder on board. Rangers’ interest in South African international Bongani Zungu of Amiens and Preston North End playmaker Daniel Johnson seems to have cooled, while Gerrard has played down speculation linking him with Mo Besic of Everton.
Sporting director Ross Wilson has been tasked with finding a midfielder capable of immediately holding down a regular first team slot but that looks to be a tall order at this stage of the window.
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