Author: Ibrox News

View: £2m-rated wizard can be long-term Rangers replacement for exit-bound ace

Rangers must continue their exciting long-term rebuild under Michael Beale and secure the services of Swansea winger Morgan Whittaker, he could be an ideal replacement for exit-bound Ryan Kent.

The 22-year-old forward has long been a top target for the Gers this month, with Swansea City driving a hard bargain and demanding more than the reported £1.5m that was rejected this week [Fabrizio Romano, 25 January].

Beale is looking to rebuild his squad this month with some young and exciting talent and has already secured his first summer signing by recruiting Norwich City midfielder Todd Cantwell [Sky Sports, 23 January].

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And the Gers is certainly not stopping there with the club reportedly in the hunt to sign young Belgian midfielder Nicolas Raskin [The Herald, 26 January], who at 21, fits the profile of player that Beale is known to work well with.

And that is certainly the case for Whittaker.

Journalist Dean Jones [GiveMeSport, 24 January] thinks the Light Blues are going to “push” again to sign Swansea attacker after falling short of the Welsh side’s £2m [The Sun, 16 January] valuation with their previous offer to sign the wing-wizard.

And if the Gers are serious about their exciting squad rebuild under Beale, then they should simply push ahead and meet the Swans’ valuation and sign the talented forward before it’s too late as he could well form a vital part of Beale’s squad for the near future.

The 22-year-old spent the first half of the 2022/23 campaign out on loan with the League One side Plymouth Argyle and recorded some stunning goal returns, registering nine goals and seven assists from 25 games highlighting that the youngster will indeed deliver if provided with the confidence and opportunity.

It is no surprise the Welsh side took up their option to recall the young forward following what was a sensational return down on the south coast. It does seem like they are willing to sell at the right price.

And with star man Kent’s future unclear at the club as his contract is up in the summer, with Premier League outfit Leicester City reportedly interested in signing him [90Min, 26 January], it’s incredibly important the Gers take initiative in the transfer market and address that uncertainty.

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Beale is indeed forming a brilliant squad so far, with Fashion Sakala, and Malik Tilman all impressing under his stewardship alongside Kent.

The former Queens Park Rangers coach has worked wonders with youthful talents throughout his career and given his consistent returns already this season, Whittaker is surely one that would fit Beale’s progressive style as well as excite the whole crowd at Ibrox.

If the Gers want to keep up with their Old Firm rivals Celtic this season and more crucially topple them in the coming seasons, then swiftly recruiting the likes of Whittaker and Raskin would be a huge statement of intent of the club’s future.

In other Rangers news, a club in Europe holds the option to re-sign a player from Ibrox whenever they like.

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Dramatic Rangers return for ‘unlucky’ player mooted, manager responds

Joe Aribo making a sensational Rangers return looks to be off the table after Nathan Jones shot down the idea in his Southampton press conference.

The Nigerian international midfielder departed Ibrox in the summer to move to the Premier League for an initial £6million, but after a decent start to the season he has fallen out of favour and remained on the bench for the previous two league fixtures.

That has raised the suggestion that he could be sent back to Glasgow, with the Light Blues looking to sign a midfielder in Nicolas Raskin, but Jones appears to have ended that prospect.

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The Saints boss said on Friday (27 January) ahead of their FA Cup game against Blackpool when asked directly about the possibility, as per the Daily Record: “Joe is someone I want to keep here. I like Joe, Joe is definitely someone I’d like to be here. He’s been a bit unlucky not to play since Palace but that will change.”

Homecoming

It always seemed unlikely so unless there is a dramatic change of direction in the final days of the window the back-to-back appearances in the Europa League and Scottish Cup finals last season will be his last contributions in a Rangers shirt.

With Standard Liege apparently playing hardball for a player who has no prospect of having an impact in the second half of the season, Raskin is proving trickier than probably necessary to bring in.

So if Aribo was completely on the outs on the south coast of England a short-term loan might make sense to both the player and the clubs.

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But it has only missed two games and Jones has backed him so fans can probably now rule out the chances of a return for the man whose goal looked like it might bring European glory back in May.

Michael Beale obviously has a familiarity with him, but while he has been pretty open about who he is interested in this month there hasn’t been any talk from the manager about Aribo.

The final days of the window are sure to be busy behind the scenes as the club look to add to Todd Cantwell before the deadline.

In other Rangers news, a long-awaited return for one forgotten Bears ace has left the manager delighted ahead of St Johnstone.

This article was originally posted here

3 out, but forgotten man finally returns in triple boost: Rangers early team news v St Johnstone

Ianis Hagi will return to the Rangers squad for the first time in a year for the game against St Johnstone at Ibrox on Saturday, Michael Beale has revealed.

The Romanian attacker hasn’t been seen in a Gers shirt since being ruled out with a major knee injury in January last year, and the manager is “delighted” he will be in the squad but not playing a full game, while new signing Todd Cantwell is also set to provide competition for places.

Top scorer Antonio Colak is also back to complete a triple-boost, but centre-back John Souttar is still not ready to be involved.

The manager said in his pre-match press conference, via the club’s official Twitter: “Ianis Hagi will be in the squad for tomorrow.

“It’s been a year since he has played a game, I am delighted to have him back – he isn’t ready yet for 90 minutes.

“Souttar just needs a little bit more time and we won’t rush him back.

“Ianis is massive for us, to have him and Todd (Cantwell) is great – we feel in a really strong place with those two available, they have been great in training. It gives us a lot of variety and competition for places.

“Colak will be back in the squad for tomorrow.”

In addition, forward Kemar Roofe is “not far” from returning to training again, while Ridvan Yilmaz should be available in “the coming weeks”.

Double-header

The cup victory at McDiarmid Park last week was a scruffy affair, and were it not for a difficult pitch and some wayward finishing should probably have ended in a more comfortable scoreline.

Back on the Ibrox turf with the home fans behind them there should be plenty of confidence in this Rangers side getting three points this weekend, especially with the returning players.

Yet this is exactly the sort of match that so often tripped the Gers up under Giovanni van Bronckhorst, even during the rousing run through the Europa League last season, when an apparently comfortable domestic fixture would trip them up and end in a frustrating draw.

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That tendency appears to have been dismissed by Beale who has seen his side dig out wins from the jaws of defeat in his short time in charge.

Having missed out on a huge three points from the Old Firm derby on 2 January it might feel like there is little to motivate the players in the league, with the gap remaining at nine points, but keeping in form for the two cups, keeping the pressure on to take advantage of any Celtic slip-ups, and basic Light Blues pride has to maintain standards.

In other Rangers news, the club have made a high six-figure bid as they look to get another signing over the line before Tuesday.

This article was originally posted here