Three Replacements For David Bates Who Rangers Can Target
Rangers defender David Bates is set to leave the club at the end of the season, after signing a four-year contract with German Bundesliga outfit Hamburg.
The 21-year-old was out of contract in the summer with the Gers and though the negotiations over a new deal were going on for quite some time, the Light Blues weren’t willing to match Bates’ wage demands of £7,500-a-week, leading to the player’s decision to move to Germany.
Bates has made 17 appearances across all competitions for Rangers this season and has established himself as an important player with his performances since the turn of the year. However, with Rangers poised to lose him at the end of the season, here are three replacements that they could target to replace the young Scotsman.
Stuart Findlay (on loan at Kilmarnock)
The 22-year-old who is currently on loan at Kilmarnock from Premier League side Newcastle United will see his contract with the Magpies expire at the end of the season and has reportedly been told by the club that he is free to leave.
Findlay has been quite a hit with the Killies since arriving in August last year. The Scottish U-21 international has made 30 appearances this term for Steve Clarke’s men, scoring three goals including the winning goal against Partick Thistle last weekend.
A strong, towering centre-back who is young and has shown that he can cut it out at this level, will be available on a free and could prove to be a shrewd signing for the Gers. However, they will have to battle with Kilmarnock for his signing.
Scott McKenna (Aberdeen)
Easily one of the best centre-halves in the Scottish Premiership currently, Aberdeen’s Scott McKenna is another option that Rangers should definitely take a look at.
The 21-year-old has made 30 appearances for the Dons in all competitions this term, producing scoring 3 goals. His performances at the back have been brilliant throughout the campaign and that earned him a call-up to the Scotland national team. McKenna was named the Man-of-the-match in only his second appearance at the international stage when the Scots beat Hungary 1-0.
Prying him away from Aberdeen might be difficult but the Gers did manage to sign midfielder Ryan Jack from the Dons last summer and McKenna could take the same path as well.
John Souttar (Hearts)
Hearts’ Young Player of the Season award winner John Souttar will be another interesting option for the Light Blues to explore.
The 21-year-old joined the Hearts from Dundee United in the winter window of 2016 and has already notched up as many as 76 appearances for the Tynecastle outfit. In the ongoing campaign, Souttar has managed 33 appearances in all competitions, scoring and assisting one goal apiece.
Billed as the future of the Scotland national team’s backline, Souttar has shown great potential and leadership qualities at a very young age. He has a contract with Craig Levein’s side that runs until the summer of 2020 but Rangers should consider the possibility of bringing in the 21-year-old as a replacement for Bates.