Rangers are in talks with an increasingly confident Southampton over a Joe Aribo transfer, and the Scottish side won’t settle for less than full value, per a report.
Aribo, 25, has been on Rangers’ books since arriving from Charlton Athletic in 2019. The Nigeria international quickly established himself under Steven Gerrard and continued to play an important role when the Liverpool legend was replaced by Giovanni van Bronckhorst.
Indeed, Aribo notched nine goals and 10 assists across all competitions last season. However, per the Athletic, his time at Ibrox is coming to an end.
Their article, written in part by the reliable David Ornstein, stated Southampton are ‘in negotiations’ to sign Aribo on a permanent deal.
Aribo is ready to test his mettle south of the border in the Premier League and is deemed ‘keen’ to link up with Ralph Hasenhuttl at St. Mary’s.
The attacker holds a release clause within his contract worth £10m. Rangers are determined to generate that amount, though the deal’s structure may not see the fee received in one lump sum.
Indeed, the Athletic report Rangers won’t accept the ‘total package’ being below £10m. That suggests there may be add-ons involved that bring the fee up to £10m at a later date.
The two clubs are currently negotiating the deal and a medical would still need to be passed before the move can take place.
Arino was scheduled to meet up with the rest of the Rangers squad in Portugal on Thursday. However, he is currently in London and his next stop could be the south coast.
The player reportedly wishes to see his split from Rangers be an amicable one. It’s noted he has enjoyed his time at Ibrox, though the time is now right to prove his worth in England’s top flight.
Can Joe Aribo make the step up?
The 25-year-old can count numerous positions on his CV at Rangers. However, he is at his best when deployed as a central or wide attacking midfielder.
Southampton operate the rarely seen 4-2-2-2 formation under Hasenhuttl, meaning Aribo will likely slot into one of the two wide positions behind the strikers.
He has always been effective in the SPL and never looked out of his depth during Rangers’ run to the Europa League final against tougher opponents.
Whether he can be as big of a success in the Premier League remains to be seen. But at £10m, he certainly looks worth a punt.