Rangers have set their sights on a potential replacement for Alfredo Morelos if he leaves the club.
That’s according to The Northern Echo‘s chief sports writer Scott Wilson.
Morelos’ contract is due to expire at the end of the 2022/23 season, so as it stands, he would be able to negotiate pre-contract terms with foreign clubs from 1 January.
The Athletic‘s Jordan Campbell wrote recently that the Colombian ‘may be open to prolonging his stay so long as the terms are not prohibitive for Rangers’, although talks between the two parties over an extension are apparently ‘stalling‘.
Sunderland striker Ross Stewart, the man named in Wilson’s report as the player who Rangers are targeting as Morelos’ successor, is valued at £450,000 by Transfermarkt and is in the same position with his contract. In another similarity between the two strikers, both are 25 years old.
Rangers officials are ‘adamant’ that Morelos won’t walk away on a free transfer in 12 months’ time and are duly drawing up possible succession plans in the event that they are compelled to entertain offers for the Colombian this summer.
Giovanni van Bronckhorst has assessed a number of options and picked out Stewart as his ‘number one‘ target. The Gers are confident that they can ‘trump’ whatever wages Sunderland can offer to the Scotland international.
Can Stewart cut it as a replacement for Morelos?
First and foremost, he impressively bagged 26 goals and laid on five assists in 53 appearances for the Black Cats last season.
Encouragingly for Van Bronckhorst, he has also shown he can be a big-game player, having netted in the League One play-off semi-final against Sheffield Wednesday and in the final against Wycombe Wanderers at Wembley as Sunderland earned promotion to the Championship.
Should Rangers sign Stewart?
Stewart has earned international recognition, too, making his debut for Scotland in their 2-0 win over Armenia last week, and he looks ready to make the step-up at club level if Rangers bring him to Ibrox.
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