Jermain Defoe is expected to leave Rangers at the end of the season but does not want to call time on his glittering playing career, Football Insider understands.

The striker, 38, has entered the last four months of his Ibrox deal and can hold pre-contract talks with overseas or cross-border clubs, including in England.

Ibrox sources have told Football Insider that Defoe would have to take a major pay cut to stay at Rangers, where he is one of the top earners on more than £30,000-a-week.

 

He is only likely to stay in Glasgow if offered a part-coaching role that could provide him with the first step into management.

Defoe has slipped down the pecking order at Rangers this season and is fourth-choice striker behind Alfredo Morelos, Kemar Roofe and Cedric Itten.

He has made just 12 appearances and had only 470 minutes of first-team action this season.

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Roofe’s calf injury has opened the door to more matches in the final months of what has been a remarkable Rangers campaign.

Defoe played 23 minutes as a substitute in last weekend’s 4-1 win against Dundee United.

The Premier League legend is highly respected by his former England teammate Steven Gerrard and has played an important role in the dressing room as well as in raising standards in training and mentoring the young players.

Defoe, who does not turn 39 until October, is on record as saying he wants to continue playing until he is 40.

He has maintained his remarkable career strike-rate during his time at Rangers, which began initially on loan from Bournemouth in January 2019.

His overall record for Glasgow giants is 29 goals and 10 assists from 64 appearances.

In other news, Premier League high flyers plot swoop for Rangers ace after contract talks update.