Rangers transfers: Six Ianis Hagi replacement options for Giovanni van Bronckhorst

Ianis Hagi’s knee injury and subsequent surgery has ruled the Romanian midfielder out for the season – and left a glaring hole in Rangers’ first-team squad.

Giovanni van Bronckhorst rued the misfortune, suffered against Stirling Albion, but did admit Rangers would be delving back into the transfer market before the window closes at the end of this month.

One area for strengthening now, if not already, is in Hagi’s creative midfield role on the right side of Rangers’ attack.

Here are six options van Bronkhorst may look at...

Andreas Skov Olsen

The most obvious candidate. Rangers have been frequently linked with a move for the Danish winger who is still at Bologna, despite similar speculation with Club Brugge. The Belgians are said to have been close to landing the 22-year-old, however the SerieA club’s valuation has not yet been met, paving the way for Rangers to potentially steal a march on their rivals. It could be costly though – the Italians are willing to sell, but only at a price in excess of £7m.

Olimpiu Morutan

A fellow Romanian, Morutan first emerged as a potential Rangers target around transfer talk of Hagi’s exit – with Galatasaray said to be keen. Morutan, currently at the Turkish club, can play the number 10 role or on the right – where Rangers’ need is greatest, especially in light of Hagi’s injury.

Injury to Ianis Hagi (left) has left Giovanni van Bronckhorst with a need in his first-team squad. He has been linked with Andreas Skov Olsen, Xavi Simons and Olimpiu Morutan.

Galatasaray spent £4m just six months ago though so would be reticent to allow the midfielder to leave so soon – but a short-term loan could satisfy Rangers’ need for Hagi cover, and allow the fringe player game-time which hasn’t been forthcoming under Fatih Terim.

Xavi Simons

This could be a coup, if Rangers manage to lure the Paris Saint-Germain youngster to Ibrox, as has frequently been discussed over recent months.

Highly-regarded, and coveted by Barcelona as well as his current employers, the Dutch teenager is a different player to Hagi and less experienced so wouldn’t be a like for like replacement.

Lazio's midfielder Adam Marusic (R) holds back Galatasaray's Romanian midfielder Olimpiu Morutan during a UEFA Europa League match (Photo by FILIPPO MONTEFORTE/AFP via Getty Images)

Predominantly a central player, the talented 18-year-old would still leave Rangers’ right-side a position to be addressed.

Francis Amuzu

Another who wouldn’t be a direct replacement for the Romanian, but he could be an answer on that side of the Rangers attack, Amuzu is a right-winger with Anderlecht, and plays on the flank without the adaptability of Hagi to move inside.

Robert Muric

The midfielder fits an age and position profile to replace Hagi, but the foundations of his link appear unlikely, according to sources in Croatia.

The 25-year-old moved around the continent with loans while at Ajax, who he joined from Dinamo Zagreb before a return home to FK Rijeka.

Mostly a right winger with capability in the centre, he mirrors Hagi’s oft-used positions and adaptability, however the loose transfer talk has been dismissed by local sources in Croatia.

Alex Lowry

Perhaps though, van Bronckhorst can divert his transfer funds elsewhere with Alex Lowry already at the Rangers Training Centre.

The B-team youngster was Hagi’s immediate replacement and impressed greatly, albeit against League Two opposition.

With two games between now and the end of the window on January 31, the 18-year-old starlet has his own short window to convince van Bronckhorst he is capable of making the grade even quicker than anticipated.

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