By Frank McAvennie

25th Jan, 2021 | 11:31am

Top pundit gives thumbs-up as Rangers close to 24-yr-old signing - Exclusive

Frank McAvennie suspects Rangers are pre-empting a defensive exit in the summer with the club in talks with Bournemouth defender Jack Simpson over a pre-contract.

The former Celtic and St Mirren striker, speaking exclusively to Football Insider, suggested that the Gers are taking proactive action ahead of a potential big name exit in the summer.

Football Insider has revealed that the Gers are making good progress on reaching an agreement soon with Simpson, 24, on a deal that would see him move to Ibrox when his Cherries deal expires in June.

The centre-half has made 12 appearances for the Championship side this season, including six consecutive starts over the festive period.

However, he was left out of the matchday squad that lost to Derby in midweek as he nears an agreement with Steven Gerrard’s side.

When asked by Football Insider if the arrival of Simpson could hint towards a defensive exit, McAvennie said: “A lot of clubs have got four centre-halves, and four good ones.

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“If they can get the boy Simpson on a free contract, he will fancy his chances of getting into that Rangers side next season. He would come in and straight away he’d be ready to fight for the team.

“They could be pre-empting an exit. That way if they were to lose a centre-half in the summer, it would not be a big problem.”

Football Insider revealed at the beginning of this month that Rangers were fearful of losing Connor Goldson this year amid interest from south of the border.

The English defender has been a colossus at the heart of the Gers defence and is yet to miss a minute of action this season.

In other news, Danny Mills is blown away as Rangers work on securing the services of four new players.