Fresh reports that Nicolas Raskin is interesting Serie A leaders and familiar Champions League foes Napoli have struck fear into Rangers supporters as January nears its conclusion.
The Gers have been linked with a high-profile pursuit of the 21-year-old Belgian midfielder all January long and it is expected to come to a head one way or another in the coming days.
But it now appears that the mystery links – and the newspaper they’ve been accredited to – are actually saying the player is bound for Glasgow and not Naples.
Out of contract in the summer and banished to the Standard Liege reserves, Rangers have been repeatedly named as frontrunners for the player’s signature even if Michael Beale poured cold water on claims a contract has been agreed.
With the Ibrox support hoping for fresh faces before the window slams shut on Tuesday night, the emergence of links between Nicolas Raskin and Napoli have more than a few fans nervous.
Perhaps the stand-out target in the window, the introduction of the Champions League dark horses presents a challenging situation for Rangers and fans might be worried about Italian intervention in any deal.
But after digging a little deeper, it appears that there is more to the Nicolas Raskin Napoli links than initially met the eye of nervous Rangers fans.
Nicolas Raskin Napoli link mystery
In a nutshell, the story suggests that Napoli are monitoring Nicolas Raskin in case anyone leaves the Diego Maradona stadium with the likes of Marseille, Galatasaray and Club Brugge also mentioned.
Whilst the story has been extensively covered by all the major Scottish tabloids, not one of them has linked back to the original source with a vague accreditation to regional Belgian newspaper La Capitale given instead.
But it appears the hysteria was sparked by a report in Belgium also covering the story and referencing the La Capitale article without a link.
This appeared in Voetbal 24, with the story referencing interest in Nicolas Raskin from Club Brugge, Napoli (referencing La Capitale), Marseille and Galatasaray.
Digging a little deeper it appears this claim is simply referencing a report at the beginning of January in the newspaper – then picked up the likes of Voetbal Belgie – which claimed Napoli were interested in Nicolas Raskin.
Rangers “close” to Raskin agreement
So whilst the suggestion that Napoli have now entered the race to sign Nicolas Raskin makes for a good headline, the links don’t exactly appear to be fresh.
In fact, if you want to read the latest from La Capitale about Rangers’ pursuit of Nicolas Raskin – published on the 30th of January – they claim Rangers are “close” to an “agreement” over the transfer of the player.
Let’s hope he’s the athletic, dynamic midfielder Michael Beale has been looking for as Rangers look to strengthen their squad with the arrival of the Belgian.
Here’s what Michael Beale had to say about Nicolas Raskin after the victory over St Johnstone.