Bates signed for the Gers in 2017 from Raith Rovers following a brief loan spell and went on to make 28 appearances for the club.
He moved to Hamburg in 2018 on a four-year contract following the expiration of his Rangers deal and initially impressed.
However, he later fell out of favour at the 2. Bundesliga club and has had spells on loan at Sheffield Wednesday and Cercle Brugge over the past two seasons.
The 24-year-old is now entering the final year of his HSV contract and it’s thought that he has little chance of breaking back into the team.
Newly promoted Premier League club Brentford have also been credited with interest.
No fee is mentioned in the report but Bates is unlikely to be expensive given his contract situation and his lack of involvement at HSV.
Rangers return unlikely for Bates
It’s hard to see the Gers genuinely being interested in Bates.
He bounced back from a hip flexor injury to get back playing regularly at Cercle Brugge last season but he wouldn’t improve on the current options at Ibrox.
The Gers recently offloaded George Edmundson to Ipswich Town while Lewis Mayo joined Partick Thistle on loan, but Steven Gerrard still has Connor Goldson, Leon Balogun, Filip Helander, Jack Simpson, Niko Katic and Leon King at his disposal.
Bates has potential and at 24, is still a good age, but the four-cap Scotland international’s next move should be to a club where he’ll play regularly.
Rangers could well look to strengthen in wide areas following the departure of Jordan Jones to Wigan, though, and they’re reportedly battling Celtic for a 23-year-old speedster on a cut-price deal.