Manager Giovanni van Bronckhorst has been quiet in terms of players coming in, but he may need to spend some of the windfall from Nathan Patterson’s sale to Everton after the news that creative midfielder Ianis Hagi is out for the season owing to knee surgery.
Rangers have been linked with forward-thinking midfield players this month – Bologna’s Andreas Skov Olsen, Anderlecht’s Francis Amuzu, Joe Rothwell of Blackburn Rovers and Galatasaray’s Olimpiu Morutan have all been mentioned – but none of those fit the exact profile of Hagi.
Morutan, a fellow Romanian, was touted as a replacement for Hagi should he be sold in this window. Hagi has admirers across Europe – Lyon are said to be keen – and the former Steaua Bucharest man may emerge as a more viable target should Van Bronckhorst decide he needs to reinforce.
Joe Aribo’s return from Nigeria duty does boost that attacking midfield area, albeit he is not quite as visionary as Hagi, while the emergence of young Alex Lowry, who scored on his debut against Stirling Albion in the Scottish Cup last week, might be enough to give the Dutch coach confidence in those already in the building. There is some suggestion Lowry may get a new contract, along with No 2 goalkeeper Jon McLaughlin.
Connor Goldson’s future beyond the summer is still up in the air, with little movement on that front. He is likely to stay until the end of the season, however, as Rangers need him to continue marshalling the defence. It is still expected that the former Brighton man will head back to England upon expiry of his contract in June.
Rangers are not rushing to bolster the backline this month, with plenty of cover across the squad, but they still want to get John Souttar signed up before the month is out.
Hearts manager Robbie Neilson revealed that Ibrox-bound pre-contract Scotland internationalist is fit and available for selection again after an ankle injury and could face Celtic on Wednesday night, while advances for Vitesse Arnhem’s centre-half Danilho Doekhi appear to have stopped for now.