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Rangers sign Croatian defender Nikola Katic on four-year deal

By Andy Newport

Rangers have signed Croatian defender Nikola Katic on a four-year deal from NK Slaven Belupo for £2million.

The 21-year-old NK Slaven Belupo centre-back emerged as a target for new Gers boss Steven Gerrard over the weekend, but initial reports suggested they would face stiff competition from Spartak Moscow for his signature.

However, the Ibrox side have won the race to sign the highly-rated defender, who has already been capped for his nation in a friendly against Mexico last year.

Despite his youth, Katic shone as a leader for Belupo last season as they finished seventh in the league, captaining the team for several games throughout the campaign.

Towering at 6ft 4in, the centre-back's main strength is in the air, however he will provide a strong presence in a Rangers back four that struggled mightily last season, conceding the most goals out of the top six sides in the Scottish Premiership.

Brighton defender Connor Goldson is also expected to arrive in Glasgow this week to complete a £3million switch.

Gerrard is determined to install a strong spine to his side and the addition of another imposing centre-back is key. Gers have already signed goalkeeper Allan McGregor as well as midfielders Scott Arfield and Ovie Ejaria.

Elsewhere, striker Joe Dodoo is closing in on a loan move to Blackpool.

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