RANGERS look to have won the race to sign John Souttar after fending off interest from the Championship to edge closer to clinching a Bosman deal for the Scotland defender.

Boss Giovanni van Bronckhorst has targeted Souttar as one of his priority signings this month amid doubts over the long-term futures of Connor Goldson and Leon Balogun and Nikola Katic's likely exit summer from Ibrox.

Souttar has been the subject of approaches from Blackburn Rovers and Sheffield United but Rangers are firmly in the driving seat to secure a pre-contract agreement in the coming days.

And the champions could make a late move to strike a deal and land Souttar this month after Hearts have hosted Celtic in a crucial Premiership clash in a fortnight.