Rangers look set to miss out on reported transfer target Santiago Moreno, with the 21-year-old’s agent suggesting that he is close to joining Portland Timbers, which is undoubtedly a blow for Steven Gerrard at Ibrox.
Rangers, Southampton and Leeds United were all linked with a move for the America de Cali winger by The Telegraph earlier this year, with the report suggesting that the youngster has been likened to Liverpool winger Sadio Mane for his style of play.
However, it now seems as if he is on his way to the MLS, with Moreno’s update providing an update on his situation to El Pais:
“There are other possibilities on the table, but the one we are working on at the moment, and the closest to a deal, is Portland.
“‘Santi’ leaves very grateful to the fans of America de Cali, he fulfilled his dreams and understands that leaving young will also give him the opportunity to return at a good time.”
Despite being just 21, Moreno has been a regular for America de Cali in recent seasons, making 52 appearances for the Liga Dimayor side, in which he has contributed 10 goals and seven assists.
Although Gerrard has a lot of quality options on the wing including Ryan Kent, Ianis Hagi, Scott Wright and new signing Fashion Sakala, it seems likely that the likes of Brandon Barker and Jordan Jones could depart in the near future, so Moreno could have added some quality squad depth ahead of what is set to be a busy season as the Gers look to compete in the Champions League.
If he plays anything like Mane, who has established himself as a “world-class” winger during his time at Liverpool, contributing 97 goals and 43 assists in 218 appearances since joining from Southampton, then he surely would have been a solid addition to Gerrard’s squad for the future.
Rangers fans will surely be gutted at the news that Moreno will almost certainly not be playing at Ibrox next season.
And, in other news… Gerrard set for huge boost with “next level” Ibrox star