Kevin Phillips has claimed Rangers lured Jon McLaughlin by offering a significant pay hike.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider correspondent Dylan Childs, the Sunderland idol revealed what helped sway the goalkeeper to quit the Stadium of Light for Ibrox.

The Black Cats revealed earlier this week they had offered McLaughlin, 32, a new contract to replace his deal which was due to expire on 30 June.

But Rangers swooped to make the keeper their third senior summer signing.

The Scottish giants confirmed the capture of the former Hearts goalkeeper on a free transfer 24 hours after their interest had been exclusively revealed by Football Insider.

Phillips is in no doubt that a big pay rise would have played a role in persuading McLaughlin to head back north of the border.

“It is Sunderland’s loss but it is no surprise he left,” he told Football Insider. “Sunderland made an offer but he has obviously been handed a better contract to go back to Scotland.”

Steven Gerrard has revealed that McLaughlin has been signed to compete with Allan McGregor for the No1 jersey and not just as back-up.

The keeper has two full Scotland caps and, in addition to his two years at Sunderland and season at Hearts, has extensive experience in the Football League in England.

McLaughlin becomes Steven Gerrard’s third senior recruit of the summer after permanent deals for Ianis Hagi and Calvin Bassey.

Hagi was signed for an initial £3million while Bassey has been prised from Leicester City for a £300,000 compensation fee.

In other Rangers news, English big hitters make sensational move to appoint Gerrard as their new manager.

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