Millwall manager Gary Rowett has confirmed his desire to keep Jake Cooper amid reports that Rangers have renewed their interest in a long-term target. 

It is five years now since Rangers reportedly saw a £3 million bid rejected by the Championship outfit. Amid reports that Mick Beale’s side are knocking on Jake Cooper’s door once again, it remains to be seen how much would be enough to twist Millwall’s arm these days. 

Cooper, after all, is out of contract in 2024. Therefore, unless Millwall sell at some point over the next two weeks, there is a very real chance that the long-serving centre-half will leave for free. Or, perhaps, on highly-reduced terms in January. 

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From Rowett’s perspective, however, the focus is not on finding a buyer, but on convincing Cooper to commit his future to life in The Lions’ Den. 

Rangers back in for Millwall ace Jake Cooper

“We want Coops to sign a new deal,” Rowett tells the South London Press. “It has been well-documented that he has got a year left. And there has been quite a lot of speculation out there.” 

In addition to Rangers, West Brom and Leeds United have also been linked.

Leeds, who could yet make a move for Rangers’ own Glen Kamara, have lost skipper Liam Cooper for two months, while Max Wober, Diego Llorente and Robin Koch have all departed since the club suffered relegation in May. 

“As far as we’re concerned, our focus is on (Cooper) signing a new deal,” Rowett, who described the former Reading man as ‘outstanding‘, adds. “At this moment in time, we are still in those discussions. 

“And we’re hoping it is something we can conclude.” 

Mick Beale wants another defender

Cooper is not the only EFL stopper reportedly on Rangers’ radar. There is interest in Peterborogh United’s much-admired Rob Edwards (BBC Sport). Edwards was the subject of interest from Chelsea, Newcastle United and Manchester City in 2022, with Posh chairman Darragh MacAnthony insisting that he could one day become a £70 million player. 

Beale, however, has distanced Rangers from speculation surrounding a late bid for Bristol City’s Zak Vyner. 

“(There is) no truth in (those Vyner links) whatsoever,” he said, via Glasgow Times

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