Rangers are at risk of missing out on Jack Butland to Premier League giants Manchester United despite the fact they are ‘willing’ to match his £35,000 Crystal Palace salary. 

Earlier this week, former Ibrox skipper Barry Ferguson suggested that the emergence of Robby McCrorie – so impressive in successive victories over Aberdeen and Celtic – could save Rangers a ‘huge amount’ of money during the summer transfer window. 

But even if Mick Beale views McCrorie as genuine first-team option for next season – and it seems he does – Rangers will still need to bring in another senior shot-stopper. 

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Who will be Rangers’ goalkeeper next season?

Allan McGregor’s contract runs out in July. Fellow veteran Jon McLaughlin could follow the 41-year-old out the door. 

The decision facing Beale, then, is whether to bring in an experienced shot-stopper – a la 30-year-old Butland – to become Rangers’ clear first-choice. Or instead a younger, developing glovesman such as Fortuna Sittard’s Ivor Pandur. 

Any decision over Butland’s future could yet be taken out of Beale’s hands, however.

The Scottish Sun say that the Gers boss believed he was ‘close’ to luring the England international north of the border. Rangers are also willing to match the £35,000-a-week salary he takes home at Crystal Palace, which would put the former Birmingham City, Stoke and Leeds stopper among the club’s very highest earners. 

The Sun add, however, that Manchester United could now blow Rangers out the water. The Red Devils could double Butland’s wages, having impressed behind the scenes during a loan spell at Old Trafford. 

What happens next, then, will depend on how Butland sees his career developing. Does he spent his prime years stuck on the sidelines – potentially third-choice – under Erik ten Hag? Or does he follow in the footsteps of former England team-mate Joe Hart and move north of the border in pursuit of the sort of first-team football that appears to be beyond him in the Premier League these days. 

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