By Frank McAvennie

12th Jan, 2022 | 3:45pm

Rangers preparing for high-profile exit after confirmed news - pundit

Rangers have signed the versatile James Sands to cover themselves if one of their first-team stars is sold this month.

That’s according to former Celtic hitman Frank McAvennie, speaking exclusively to Football Insider about the Gers’ latest acquisition.

Rangers announced the signing of Sands, 21, from New York City FC on 5 January.

He can play as a midfielder or as a defender and is already a full USMNT international.

Due to his versatility, McAvennie claims Rangers have covered themselves if they are to lose one of Connor Goldson or Joe Aribo this month.

“Rangers are covering themselves,” McAvennie told Football Insider correspondent Ben Wild.

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“This guy can play in midfield and defence. To me, that’s a clear sign that they have someone to come in if Aribo or Goldson goes this month.

“I’m not saying that will happen but there is a lot of talk about those players going.

“Signing a versatile player is always a good move but Rangers already have a mountain of midfielders.

“I would expect this guy will play in the defence because the backline hasn’t been as strong this season.

“He’s young as well so there is loads of potential there you would think.

“It will be interesting to see how well he does and if he plays much football ahead of the regulars.”

Sands joins Rangers on an 18-month loan deal and the club have the option to buy him.

Upon moving to Ibrox, Sands claimed he is “looking forward to joining an ambitious and talented group of players and coaches”.

In other news, Kieran Maguire issues verdict on Ibrox boardroom “power shift” after document “becomes public”.