By Alan Hutton

13th Oct, 2021 | 9:30am

Hutton backs Rangers to seal 'brilliant' Souttar signing after talking to Levein

Alan Hutton has backed Rangers to poach John Souttar from Hearts in January amid a reported transfer battle.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the former Gers full-back revealed he has heard rave reviews about the 25-year-old from former Jam Tarts boss Craig Levein.

As reported by the Scottish Mail on Sunday (10th October via Press Reader), Rangers are long-standing suitors of Souttar and could firm up their interest with a move in January.

The centre-back is out of contract at Hearts next summer, meaning he could be available for a nominal fee.

Souttar signed his current terms at Tynecastle back in 2019.

English sides Stoke City and Blackburn Rovers are reportedly also in the hunt for the Scotland international.

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Hutton admitted the defender’s career had been set back significantly by a serious ankle injury.

However, he still insisted the Hearts star would be a welcome addition at Ibrox.

“I think he’s a brilliant player, if I’m honest,” Hutton told Football Insider deputy editor Russell Edge.

“Injury has really hampered him moving forward over the last few seasons. He’s had some bad injuries so he’s getting back there now.

“Obviously I read a lot about Scottish football. Craig Levein, I know him really well and he spoke so highly about him and what he brings to a team. It was a glowing report.

“I think he fits the bill for Rangers. It seems to me that he’s got that winning mentality, that determination to do well. That’s the type of player that Rangers need.”

Souttar missed most of the 2019/20 and 2020/21 campaigns with a ruptured Achilles tendon.

He has 161 Premiership appearances and three Scotland caps under his belt.

In other news, Rangers tipped to sell senior star for £17million as officials in contact.