Ince plans cross-border defection

Scottish Review
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The Independent Football

The former England midfielder Paul Ince has told Rangers he is willing to solve their midfield problems. The Middlesbrough captain's current contract expires at the end of the season, allowing the 34-year-old to talk to other clubs.

He is aware that Rangers' manager, Alex McLeish, is keen to sign an experienced midfielder before the Uefa Cup deadline at the end of the month. An immediate move would mean paying a fee, but if McLeish can wait until the summer then he would not have to pay a fee for Ince.

Ince told the Daily Record he had begun researching life at Ibrox by talking to former England and Riverside team-mate Paul Gascoigne.

Asked if he would be prepared to move to Glasgow, he replied: "What do you think? Of course I would, because Rangers are a massive club. I know all about Rangers because Gazza never stopped talking about them when he was up in Scotland."

Ince revealed his future could be decided within a fortnight. "I'm still under contract, so I don't think it would be appropriate for me to speak in detail about other teams at the moment. Yes, there are things happening. But I just want to concentrate on getting Middlesbrough up the Premiership and away from the relegation zone at the moment," he said.

Ince's agent, Steve Kutner, said: "There hasn't been any approach from Rangers as yet, although I'm sure a move north would appeal to Paul. The only concrete interest has come from Italian clubs."

McLeish is also weighing up a move for Swedish striker Marcus Allback, who is rated at £4 million by his Dutch club, Heerenveen, but will be available for £2.5m in May.

Allback was unmoved by the possibility. He said: "If Rangers want me then they'll buy me. If they don't then okay, that's fine. It's not as if the biggest goal in my life is only to come to Glasgow."