Reports have emerged linking Rangers FC to West Brom’s veteran centre-back, Gareth McAuley. It is of our understanding that Gers footballing director, Mark Allen has contacted the 38-year-old’s representatives for a possible switch to the Ibrox this summer on a one year deal.
This could be a lucrative move for all parties since the Baggies have already concluded their association with the Northern Ireland international and is preparing for life in the EFL Championship.
McAuley himself has expressed interest in moving south side of the border in hopes of prolonging his playing career for a few more years. The defensive ace wants to break the 100 international cap record for his country after registering his 76th and 77th against Panama and Costa Rica last week.
The Albion man has led an illustrious career in the English first division and has plenty of experience under those rugged boots. He spent the last 7 years at the Hawthorns and collectively made 227 appearances along with 11 goals and 6 assists.
Prior to that, he spent time with clubs like Ipswich Town, Leicester City, Lincoln City, Coleraine and Crusaders. McAuley started his playing career with Lindsfield but made his professional debut with the Irish outfit, Ballyclare Comrades.
After making a name for himself in his home country, the Larne-born player was signed by League Two side Lincoln City. He quickly climbed the career ranks by earning a move to Leicester and then to Ipswich.
He was named the captain of the Tractors side and scored a goal on his 100th appearance for the side. After impressing in the Championship, McAuley finally earned his place in the top-flight and even got voted Player’s Player Of The Season and the Supporter’s Player Of The Season in the 2012/13 season.
He has been a regular for his country’s senior team and still seems to have the legs to play in one of the European top-flights. It is expected that the Gers can provide the experienced centre-back with the best opportunities.
Steven Gerrard is on the lookout for able defensive heads who will give solidity to the vulnerable backline. Russel Martin is gone and Bruno Alves has struggled with fitness in the previous season.
David Bates and Ross McCrorie are solid young talents but still need to develop into elite professionals. McAuley is a leader who will bring more to the club other than his footballing abilities and help the youngsters understand the nuances of top-flight football.