Rangers suffer major blow in battle to keep key man from clutches of English rivals - report

By Alex Stevens

Mark Warburton’s contract talks with Rangers have dramatically broken down, according to a report.

The Ibrox manager was widely expected to sign an improved deal this summer after leading the club back to the Scottish Premiership.

But the Daily Express claim negotiations over a new agreement have collapsed following a last-minute hitch.

Nevertheless, it is said that Warburton will remain as manager next season and continue to build on his fine debut season in Glasgow.

Warburton has been targeted by a number of leading Premier League and Championship clubs on the back of his impressive first season at Ibrox.

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The Daily Record claimed last month that a deal had already been agreed with Rangers in principle, with Warburton in line to double his salary to £600,000-a-year.

The former Brentford manager’s future has now been thrown into fresh doubt, which is a blow to the club amid the optimism of the off-season, in which they have secured the signings of four new players and are close to landing former Tottenham winger Nico Kranjcar.

In other Rangers news, Barton has sent a message to a number of Celtic players.