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Nikica Jelavic wants Rapid exit to Rangers

Rapid Vienna striker Nikica Jelavic last night showed why Rangers are keen to secure his signature, by netting twice in his current side’s 3-0 win over Beroe in a Europa League qualifier.

The Croatia international’s goals could throw a spanner in the works of any deal because should the transfer become protracted and he plays in the next round of the competition, then Jelavic will be deemed ineligible to take part in the Gers’ Champions’ League campaign.

Rapid have so far rejected attempts from the Scottish champions to secure the 24-year-old frontman, but the player has made his preference clear, as he stated before last night’s game that he wants to follow in the footsteps of fellow countryman Dado Prso, who was a Rangers favourite during a three-year spell between 2004 and 2007.

“I was informed about Rangers' interest in me and I really want to go,” said Jelavic (right).

“Rapid are a great side and I have enjoyed my time here, but I have paid them back well with goals and I deserve the chance to go. It has always been my dream to play in Britain and Rangers are a big club with tradition. I would love to play there.”

Rangers are light in numbers up front after losing Kris Boyd to Middlesbrough during the summer.

During the pre-season campaign so far, Kenny Miller has been playing up front on his own, but the striker has been struggling with shin splints which may take time to recover from.

Northern Ireland striker Kyle Lafferty has been keen to take on a more central position having been played wide on the left, but boss Walter Smith seems to prefer having the Kesh-man on the flanks and wants to bring in another forward.

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