Is Rangers captain James Tavernier poised for an £8million return to Newcastle United?
Over the weekend reports emerged that Rangers ace James Tavernier is a key target for Newcastle United.
On Monday morning, the Daily Star suggested that the Magpies are set to make an £8million bid for the Ibrox captain with the Premier League side confident of having the offer accepted.
Tavenier is familiar with Newcastle, having spent six years on Tyneside with the club. Although with six loan spells he made just ten appearances before making the switch to Wigan Athletic in 2014.
The 27-year-old arrived at Rangers in 2015 under Mark Warburton and was made captain last summer by Steven Gerrard.
He had arguably his best season at Ibrox, hitting 17 goals and setting up even more as the team finished second. In addition he is such a key cog as to how Rangers play, contributing so much in the attacking phase as well as his defensive responsibilities.
Former club Newcastle are in a desperate situation.
Following the arrival of Steve Bruce to replace Rafa Benitez, fans are irate with owner Mike Ashley, while the squad is in much need of TLC.
The club are set to break their record transfer fee with the signing of forward Joelinton from Hoffenheim.
Bruce has reportedly turned attention to Tavernier to strengthen the defence.
However, Newcastle currently have two right-backs in DeAndre Yedlin and Javier Manquillo, while midfielder Isaac Hayden can also fill in at full-back, as he did in the final game of the season.
It suggests that Bruce has more pressing concerns than the right-back position.
From a Rangers perspective, Gerrard will be very keen to hold onto his captain. Having worked to bring in a number of players this summer, he will feel that his squad is on the verge of being complete.
Despite the presence of Matt Polster, who started in the position against St Jospeh’s on Thursday, and Jon Flanagan, the departure of Tavernier would create a massive void and it would be extremely difficult to find a player of his ilk who would replicate the numbers he produces.