Rangers have been linked with a few players going into the January transfer window, but one of the club’s prime targets may have been written off for a move to Ibrox.
Hearts manager Robbie Neilson has made clear his stance about the current situation on John Souttar’s immediate future at the club. Speaking to Sky Sports about the £3.1k-p/w defender, the Jan Tarts manager said: “From our perspective he’s got a contract until the end of the season, and unless we get a bid we can’t refuse he will be here until at least the end of the season.
‘The owner and Joe Savage have been speaking to him and we feel we have put together a very good contract for him so it’s just negotiating that now.
“If he does decide to leave, it will take a huge bid in January or he will see out his contract and everyone will leave happy.”
Van Bronckhorst already has competition when it comes to securing the signature of Souttar, with nine English Championship clubs reportedly interested in the centre-back also.
When it comes to players running down their contracts, usually this encourages clubs to sell their out-of-contract players at a cut-price fee to cash in before they leave on a free a few months later. However, in this scenario it appears that Neilson has made it very clear that a large amount of money would need to be offered for the club to let the defender go before his contract his up, which will be frustrating for Rangers.
Van Bronckhorst has intimated that he would welcome some reinforcements in defence, and Souttar looks to be the perfect suitor to fit the club’s needs moving forward, but whether the Gers will be willing to pay over the odds for the Hearts defender remains to be seen.
Despite being a centre-back, the 25-year-old has three goals already for Hearts this season, proving that he is in fine form and possibly in a strong position to get a move in the January transfer window before his contract ends at Tynecastle in the summer.
However, Neilson’s firm comments indicate that Souttar is not likely to be leaving any time soon, which is sure to frustrate the Ibrox faithful who may have been eager to see him coming to the Scottish champions.