Warburton makes loan approach for La Liga playmaker to solve Rangers midfield problem - report
By Alex Stevens
Rangers have made an approach for Brentford playmaker Jota ahead of the January transfer window, according to a report.
The Scottish Sun claim that manager Mark Warburton wants to be reunited with the player who he brought to Griffin Park in the summer of 2014.
The Rangers boss made it clear this week that he wants to strengthen the club’s midfield and bring greater goalscoring potential to a key area of the pitch.
It is said that he firmly has Jota, who is currently on loan at La Liga club Eibar from Brentford, in his sights and has already made an enquiry about a loan move next month.
Warburton revealed on Wednesday he had targeted a “dynamic, goalscoring” overseas midfielder with an “outstanding pedigree” and his plan was to clinch a loan transfer with a view to a permanent deal.
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Warburton’s midfield is having to cope without long-term absentees Niko Kranjcar, Jordan Rossiter and Josh Windass in addition to the much-publicised departure of Joey Barton.
Jota, 25, has made only five appearances for Eibar this season but has a fine record of the club during two spells of 11 goals from 55 matches.
The Spaniard was similarly productive at Brentford, where he scored 11 goals and supplied three assists in 51 encounters.
Rangers, who are third in the league, are preparing for Saturday’s Scottish Premiership clash against fourth-placed Aberdeen at Ibrox.
Warburton’s side are a distant eight points behind runaway leaders Celtic in the league despite having played three more matches.
Football Insider verdict:
Jota has the pedigree that Rangers are seeking. He has a one-in-five record at Eibar and Brentford, a creditable return for an attacking midfielder, and has a fine track record in the second tiers of the English and Spanish leagues. There is a chance that he could also be available next month, as he is barely getting a look-in at La Liga outfit Eibar. But this means that the 25-year-old will not be match sharp, and may not be able to hit the ground running in the Scottish top flight. Warburton badly needs someone who can deliver straight away, rather than have a lengthy bedding-in process.
In other Rangers transfer news, the club have reportedly been offered a Championship attacker.