John Souttar ‘set to sign’ Rangers pre-contract imminently as talented Ibrox youngster Kai Kennedy make Hamilton loan switch

The Hearts centre-back is reportedly keen on a permanent move to Ibrox this month

John Souttar is on the verge of signing a pre-contract with Rangers, according to reports.

The Hearts defender has been closely monitored by a number of English Championship clubs as he enters the final six months of his contract at Tynecastle.

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However, it now appears that Rangers are closing in on the 25-year-old’s signature this month after holding initial talks.

GlasgowWorld reported the Light Blues were leading the race to secure his services yesterday.

John Souttar has been identified as a target for Rangers. (Photo by Craig Foy / SNS Group)

Sky Sports claim the centre-back is ‘keen on a permanent move to take place’ in this window but it looks as though his move to Ibrox is more likely to happen in the summer.

The Scotland international earned his first cap in over three years and scored in a crucial 2-0 World Cup qualifying victory over Denmark last year.

Souttar has previously been plagued by fitness problems, including three separate Achilles injuries which looked, at one point, to have ended his playing career.

However, he has bounced back emphatically this season and has made over 150 appearance for the Jambos after joining from Dundee United six years ago.

Hearts boss Robbie Neilson insisted his club will NOT cash in on Souttar this month unless they received a “huge bid” this month.

Meanwhile, Hamilton Accies have fought off competition to secure highly-rated Rangers winger Kai Kennedy on loan for the remainder of the season.

Kai Kennedy is wanted by two Championship clubs. (Photo by Craig Foy / SNS Group)

The 19-year-old has been tipped for a big future at Ibrox and spent the first half of the campaign at Championship strugglers Dunfermline.

He was recalled by the Light Blues earlier this month but it has since been agreed to let the talented youngster head out again to play in Scottish football’s second tier.

Kennedy, now in his fourth Championship loan move after previous stints at Inverness and Raith Rovers, was also attracting interest from Kilmarnock and several other lower league clubs.

He is said to have trained with his new team-mates this morning after negotiations were completed between both clubs.