Rangers are reportedly renewing their interest in Millwall defender Jake Cooper but one former England international would be ‘very surprised’ to see the 6ft 6ins colossus head to Ibrox this month.
During Mick Beale’s first spell at Rangers – when the current Ibrox boss was operating as Steven Gerrard’s assistant – the Glasgow giants reportedly failed with a £3 million bid for Millwall’s long-serving vice-captain.
Five years on, while Beale was quick to dismiss speculation linking Bristol City’s Zak Vyner with a move north of the border, it may be telling that he was not quite so keen to rule out a late-summer bid for another fellow Championship centre-half.
Beale has made no secret of his desire to add another defender to his squad. Cooper, meanwhile, has less than 12 months left on his Millwall contract.
While Gary Rowett’s side will be determined to retain a player labelled ‘outstanding’ during an immense 2022/23 campaign, money talks. And Millwall may have no choice but to listen to offers if Cooper has reservations about signing a new deal.
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Rangers back in for Millwall’s Jake Cooper
“Rangers are reportedly aiming to sign Jake Cooper, their solid centre-back, who is entering the final year of his contract,” Carlton Palmer, capped 18 times by England in the 1990s, tells Football League World.
“They have had interest in the player before. But Jake Cooper is apparently in talks to extend that contract. Will Millwall be desperate to do so? At 28, he’ll be hard to replace.”
Palmer believes that, after six years at The Den, Cooper’s head will not be easily turned. Then again, at the age of 28, he’s unlikely to be handed a better chance to play European football; Rangers taking on Servette in Tuesday’s Champions League play-offs.
“Rangers have been long-term admirers of Jake,” Palmer adds. “But I’d be very surprised if he doesn’t pen a new long-term contract at Millwall.”