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Northern Ireland striker Kyle Lafferty set to join Rangers this week: report

By Gareth Hanna

Rangers are hopeful that Kyle Lafferty could be back at Ibrox by the end of this week, according to reports.

The Glasgow club have so far had two bids rejected by Hearts but, having returned to the negotiating table, are optimistic that a deal could soon be thrashed out for the 30-year-old Northern Ireland striker, according to the Daily Record.

Rangers offered £200k for the Hearts ace last month but both that and a second bid, which included former captain Lee Wallace, have been rejected as Hearts hold out for their £750,000 valuation.

Lafferty still has one year to run on his Tynecastle contract and is a valuable asset to Craig Levein's side. He netted 19 goals in 36 games last season and has already begun this term brightly, scoring the only goal of the game against Celtic on Saturday.

The forward is understood to be keen on a return to Rangers, whom he played for between 2008 and 2012. He then joined Swiss club FC Sion by exercising his right to leave the crisis-hit Gers when financial meltdown struck and players could refuse to allow their contracts to be transferred to the new company.

Last year, Lafferty said if he could go back in time he would stay with the club and aid their bid to return to the top of Scottish football after being placed in the fourth tier. In the same interview, he outlined his desire to return to the Ibrox club.

The Enniskillen man has netted 20 goals in 67 caps for Northern Ireland.

Boss Steven Gerrard has already added a new forward to his panel, bringing in Roma's Umar Sadiq on loan. However, Josh Windass left for Wigan last week in a reported £2.5m deal.

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