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Rangers close in on Swedish defender while McPake commits future

 

Long-term deal: Josh McPake
Long-term deal: Josh McPake

By Andy Newport

Rangers have secured highly-rated young player Josh McPake on a longer contract as well as moving closer to signing a defender.

Reports in Sweden claim Bologna centre-back Filip Helander has agreed a move to Ibrox.

Rangers manager Steven Gerrard confirmed on Tuesday night that he was closing in on a permanent deal for a defender and Swedish newspaper Aftobladet claims Helander is on his way in a deal worth about £4m.

The 26-year-old former Malmo and Verona player has 10 international caps.

McPake has signed a new three-year contract days after appearing for the first team in their 5-0 friendly win over Oxford.

The 17-year-old attacking midfielder had been linked with the likes of Roma and Liverpool after being named Rangers academy's Player of the Year last season and featuring in the SFA Youth Cup final win over Celtic.

Meanwhile, Sheyi Ojo feels Rangers can take confidence from their 4-0 victory over St Joseph's in Gibraltar.

The on-loan Liverpool midfielder notched a debut goal as Rangers got their Europa League campaign off to a satisfying start.

Ojo said: "I am delighted to have scored and more importantly it was a great result for the team. We are looking forward to the next game now.

"It was great to score for this amazing club and I am looking forward to many more, hopefully.

"It was frustrating at times, we just had to stay patient and once we got the first goal from Jacko (Ryan Jack), then the game opened up. It was about us then and we showed our quality and it was a comfortable victory.

"It is amazing for the confidence, from day one the gaffer has told us we have an important season up ahead."

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