By Harvey Byrne
Aberdeen have emphatically told Rangers to keep away from midfielder Kenny McLean after a bid from the Ibrox giants, according to reports.
The Glasgow Evening Times claimed on Saturday that the Gers had submitted a bid for the 25-year-old central midfielder.
However, on Sunday the Daily Record is reporting that the Dons have warned that McLean is not available at any price, despite his contract ending next summer.
Last season’s runners-up have already lost star Jonny Hayes to Celtic this summer, while former captain Ryan Jack made the switch to Rangers following the expiration of his contract.
But, it is understood that when Derek McInnes made the decision to remain at Aberdeen instead of moving south to Sunderland that he was given the assurances that no more players would be sold in this window.
This could come as a blow to Rangers, who have been already made eight signings themselves this summer and they may have looked at McLean, who played in 53 matches for Aberdeen in all competitions last season, scoring five goals while also assisting five times as someone with experience of playing in the Premiership.
Football Insider verdict:
McLean is a talented player, but Rangers have also already brought in two natural central midfielders this summer in the forms of Ryan Jack and Carlos Pena, while Graham Dorrans is also a much better player. There is only room for so many central midfielders in one team and Pedro Caixinha also has the returning Jordan Rossiter and Niko Kranjcar coming back from long-term injuries. Therefore, while this is a blow to Rangers as they miss out on a target, they can not be too disheartened as they are well covered in the central midfield position now.
In other Rangers transfer news, the Gers have been installed as favourites to sign this four-time Premier League winner.