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Mervan Celik signs for Rangers


The Monk

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RANGERS are on the trail of £1.5million-rated Swede Mervan Celik.

And manager Ally McCoist is poised to strike a loan deal with Arsenal for their teenage strike sensation Benik Afobe.

Midfielder Celik is out of contract with Gothenburg club GAIS and is available for free.

The 21-year-old is desperate for a fresh start and Ibrox chiefs are ready to pounce.

Record Sport understands an offer has been tabled and sources in Sweden insist the player is keen on a switch to Glasgow.

Rangers would be required to pay compensation because Celik was nurtured by GAIS but that could be as little as £100,000.

The player is an exciting attacking midfielder who can operate on both wings and he cracked 14 goals in 27 appearances in his last season to alert a string of scouts.

A mainsay of the Sweden Under-21 set-up, the playmaker is on the fringes of Eric Hamren’s senior squad.

Middlesbrough and Fulham have kept tabs along with Italians Genoa and Parma but Turks Gaziantepspor are leading the chase alongside Rangers.

Last night agent Hasan Cetinkaya said: “There are many clubs who have been interested and, had it been any other player, it would have been clear long ago but Mervan has been calm.

“Right now it is about two clubs and Mervan has not decided yet.”

Gunners kid Afobe was selected for England’s Under-20 World Cup squad in summer before Arsene Wenger pulled him out to join his first-team squad’s pre-season tour of Germany.

In August he was called up by England Under-21 manager Stuart Pearce as a replacement for Manchester United striker Danny Wellbeck but injury denied him his debut at that level.

London-born Afobe, who turns 19 next month, has yet to start a competitive match for Arsenal – although he played against New York Red Bulls in the Emirates Cup in July and spent the second half of last season on loan to Huddersfield, where he formed a prolific partnership with Scots scoring sensation Jordan Rhodes.

Afobe scored five goals in 12 starts as Huddersfield made the League Two play-offs and is back at Arsenal continuing his football education.

The powerful 6ft striker would be Rangers’ second loan signing from Arsenal after defender’s Kyle Bartley spell at Ibrox.

But McCoist may wait until later in the transfer window before making a move – or until he knows whether Nikica Jelavic will stay or go.

McCoist will also take a close look at Estonian Enar Jaager, who is expected to arrive for a trial next week.

The 27-year-old, primarily a right-back, has just left Norwegians Aalesunds and is a free agent.

Much-travelled Jaager, who has had spells with Ascoli in Italy and with Moscow Torpedo, won his 84th cap in the Euro 2012 play-off with Ireland in November.

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This is what I like, keeping a deal under tabs and its only being announced due to a agent blabbing when a offer has been made. Better that way than the build up to making a offer.

Anyway, sounds promising. 14 goals in a season neverminnd 27 games for a midfielder is superb. Type of attacking midfield, flair player we need it seems.

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i like that rangers are finally looking far and wide for talent

the days of buying from the bigger leagues are well and truly gone...

rangers need a solid string of young scottish talent with some savvy maneourvering with transfers by looking for emerging talent that will have the ability to cut it in the SPL, learn their craft and move on for (hopefully) big profits, allowing rangers to survive and continue the cycle

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I would imagine (hope) his name would be pronounced Ch-elik (ch .. as in change)

Still, good to see the club looking outwith the usual areas for talent

I have always said, we could sell the club to talented young players as a good stepping stone, come to Rangers and use us as a platform to get yourself to the riches of the Premiership.

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So is this a goer then?

No idea, it's plastered all over the papers and net this morning though.

The guy is on a free and has obvious talent while still being only 21 so we really should be in for him considering our lack of money.

Let's just hope there is not a bidding war with others including Celtic.

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