Rangers close to naming Giovanni van Bronckhorst as Gerrard’s successor

Giovanni van Bronckhorst is on the verge of being announced as the new manager of Rangers with the club confident of concluding a deal on Thursday. Rangers officials met the 46-year-old in Amsterdam on Tuesday to discuss terms following an initial meeting on Saturday in London.

The Scottish Premiership champions have been searching for a replacement head coach after Steven Gerrard joined Aston Villa last week following three years in charge. The former Rangers player Van Bronckhorst, who managed Feyenoord from 2015 to 2019 and was most recently head coach at Guangzhou City, is believed to be the club’s first choice for the role.

The Rangers ​​sporting director, Ross Wilson, has been leading negotiations and it is understood that both the club and Van Bronckhorst are happy with how they are progressing, with an agreement imminent.

Van Bronckhorst played for Rangers between 1998 and 2001, winning two league titles – including a domestic treble in 1998-99 – and making 117 appearances. He also earned 106 caps for the Dutch national team during a highly successful playing career which included spells at Arsenal and Barcelona.

Rangers are four points ahead of Celtic at the top of the Premiership table after 13 games. Their next match on Sunday is a Scottish League Cup semi-final against Hibernian at Hampden Park.

Assuming a deal is agreed and announced with Van Bronckhorst before the weekend, it would still remain unlikely that the semi-final would be his first game in charge. Rangers are currently being led by an interim coaching team, including David McCallum and Jermain Defoe, while the managerial position remains vacant.

Rangers’ next fixture after this weekend is a Europa League group game at Ibrox against Sparta Prague next Thursday. After that come league games away at Livingston and Hibernian. The club have been keen to get a new manager in place swiftly with Champions League qualification all but certain if they retain their title this season.

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