By Azeem Siddiqui

7th Jul, 2022 | 4:30pm

Giovanni van Bronckhorst admits Joe Aribo likely to leave Rangers ‘very soon’

Rangers manager Giovanni van Bronckhorst has confirmed that midfielder Joe Aribo is heading to the Premier League “very soon”.

The Nigeria international has been heavily linked with a move to Southampton, with a move said to have been agreed between the two clubs.

Van Bronckhorst, while talking to Sky Sports, heaped praise on the midfielder and admitted that Aribo’s time at the Ibrox Stadium might well be coming to an end.

“What he’s done for this club has been fantastic,” he said. “Joe is a very important player for us. He has been a really important player for us for the last few years.

“His development has been really good. His ambition is to play in the Premier League and probably that is going to happen very soon”.

Big loss

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The Nigeria international played the most number of matches and minutes for club and country in the previous season.

He was instrumental in the Gers’ terrific run in the Europa League where the side finished as the runners-up after losing to Eintracht Frankfurt in the final on penalties.

Aribo formed a fantastic partnership with Glen Kamara in the middle of the park after the injury to Ianis Hagi.

He also played as a makeshift defender in the last few games of the season, mainly in the Europa League final where he opened the scoring against Eintracht Frankfurt.

Those are the kind of qualities which will be hard to replace for the Rangers in the upcoming season and it will be interesting to see who they will bring in to replace Aribo.

If the deal to Southampton will be completed, the 25-year-old will leave the Rangers after making 148 appearances across all competitions, scoring 26 times and providing 25 assists in the process [Transfermarkt].

In other Rangers news, contract talks with a key player have hit a new impasse with a summer exit now on the cards.