Rangers are working on signing a new senior centre-back after the devastating Nikola Katic blow, Football Insider understands.

The Light Blues are set to be without the Croatian powerhouse for a big chunk of the upcoming season after he tore his knee ligaments in pre-season training.

Ibrox sources have told Football Insider that recruitment chief Ross Wilson and manager Steven Gerrard agree a new central defender is needed to provide cover and competition for Connor Goldson, Filip Helander and George Edmundson.

Wilson and his team are more likely to use the loan market than bring in a full-time signing.

Several internal options are available at Rangers, including new left-back Calvin Bassey, who played at centre-back for Leicester Under-23s on a few occasions last season, as well as rising star Lewis Mayo.

There is also 22-year-old Ross McCrorie, who is out on loan at League One outfit Portsmouth and has impressed at centre-back for Rangers before.

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However, Rangers do not central defence as McCrorie’s best position and believe he is more effective in a midfield anchorman role.

The Light Blues recognise the significance of the upcoming campaign and having a squad strong enough to stop Celtic galloping to a historic 10th consecutive title.

Gerrard is keen on recruiting an experienced centre-back rather than a youngster from a top academy south of the border.

The manager is concerned about Helander’s fitful injury record – he missed the last 21 games of last season – and Edmundson’s lack of top-level experience.

Goldson is the undisputed first choice centre-back and has hardly missed a game in two years but Gerrard wants quality cover in place.

In other Rangers news, Alan Hutton has tipped Steven Gerrard to unleash never-seen rookie after big development.

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