DANNY WILSON has become Mark Warburton’s first signing as Rangers manager.
The 23-year-old invoked a clause in his contract to leave Hearts for free this summer despite skippering the Jambos to the Championship title.
He has agreed a three-year deal to return to Ibrox, having started his career there before being sold to Liverpool for £2million in 2010.
Gers boss Warburton is closing in on Wigan defender Rob Kiernan and is also looking to sign 35-year-old former Watford and Derby midfielder John Eustace to guide what he hopes will be a predominantly youthful squad.
Warburton said: “We are making good progress and there are hopefully a positive few days ahead.”
On 24-year-old Kiernan, who came through the youth ranks under Warburton at Watford, the manager said: “He’s a very talented player. We are hopefully near the end of negotiations.
“I have known him very well from a very young age, he is technically very good, 6ft 3in, comfortable at Championship level down south.
“We are looking for a young, hungry squad that want to play here but at the same time you need one or two senior mentors to look after them, not just on the pitch but off the pitch too. It’s about getting the balance right, making sure they are good enough to deal with 45,000 out there, but also what they bring to the club away from the pitch. People like John Eustace are few and far between. We are having a chat and seeing how far we can take it, no more than that.
“If you look at the win ratio when John is playing, he is really important. He had a big role at Derby in recent years. He is someone I know really well and someone I have always been impressed with.”
Warburton added that Hibs midfielder Scott Allan was “one of a hundred players” mentioned to him in recent days but he will take his time going through the options.
“The first competitive game is July 25 so we have to be aware that pre-season is tight but we can’t rush into it,” he said. “The biggest mistake we could make is to panic and get the wrong players at the wrong time.”