An update has emerged on defender Aaron Hickey, regarding Rangers’ interest in bringing him to Ibrox over the summer.
The report claims Premier League side Aston Villa and Gers’ fierce rivals Celtic were also keen on a deal, which ultimately failed to materialise as he remained in Italy.
Rangers chief Ross Wilson must secure a January deal to sign Hickey from Bologna to bolster Steven Gerrard’s squad heading into the second half of the campaign. Whilst they failed with a previous move for the defender, the January window provides them with a second chance to persuade the Italian side to part ways with the teenager.
He has impressed in Serie A for Bologna this season and is proving himself to be a quality young defender. Hickey has averaged an excellent SofaScore rating of 6.90 in seven starts, scoring two goals and winning an eye-catching 67% of his duels.
Scottish coach Austin MacPhee once compared Hickey to Jonny Evans and claimed that he could be ‘like’ one of the great Barcelona midfielders. He said:
“He’s so young he could play a lot of positions. He could end up being like Busquets.
“Right now he reminds me of Jonny Evans, who I’ve seen in training with Northern Ireland. It’s the way he defends, moves and always wants the ball as a defender.
“Jonny spent some of his career at left-back, centre-back and defensive midfield. It will be interesting to see where Aaron ends up but he’s a young player I would hang my hat on. He’s tall enough to play at centre-back too.”
This highlights the £16k-per-week gem’s positional flexibility on the pitch. In his short career to date, Hickey has played centre-back, left-back, right-back, right-midfield and left-midfield for Hearts and Bologna. Gerrard could call upon him in a multitude of roles, with MacPhee seemingly believing that he could also play as a holding midfielder.
At the age of 19, he also has potential to improve further and become a top player in the future, having already proven that he can perform to a high standard in Serie A.
This is why Wilson must bring him to Ibrox for Gerrard to work with in January. He could be a boost to the current squad whilst also being an investment that could earn the Gers a big payday down the road if he fulfils his promise.