Jhon Arias already appears to have moved out of Rangers’ price-range with Copa Libertadores champions Fluminense rejecting a £10.5 million bid from Russian giants Zenit St Petersburg.
In truth, the chances of Jhon Arias ending up at Ibrox during the January transfer window always felt a little slim. That is simply the harsh reality facing a club in Scotland, even one as historic and as well-supported as Rangers.
The Glasgow giants may have a budget most other Premiership teams could only dream of. But the financial firepower at Philippe Clement’s disposal still pales in comparison to clubs south of the border and across the continent.
Rangers have scouted Arias. But, according to TEAMtalk, so have a number of Premier League clubs. West Ham United, Wolves, and Crystal Palace among them. Second-tier duo Leeds United and Leicester City also have the funds to blow Rangers out the water.
Zenit St Petersburg, meanwhile, have seen a £10.5 million bid rejected by the newly-crowned champions of South America. The Russian giants failing with an offer higher than Rangers have ever paid for a player in their 151-year history (Globo Esporte).
Fluminense’s Jhon Arias too expensive for Rangers
Alex Viveros, Arias’ agent, did not speak about those Zenit links when quizzed by Gol Caracol. He did, however, confirm interest from a number of English-based clubs, Arias’ reputation growing ever further after helping Fluminense defeat Boca Juniors and claim the Copa Libertadores title for the very first time.
“Jhon is a focused, committed and calm player. In addition, he has the support of my partner Gianfranco, who has been a great support for him in Brazil. Together, we closely follow the relevant aspects of his career,” Viveros explains.
Arias is one of the best players in Brazilian football. (A league) considered one of the most difficult championships in the world. Therefore, it is not surprising that he has aroused the interest of several Premier League teams.
“Jhon’s future will depend on the opportunities and needs of clubs abroad.”
‘Several Premier League teams’
The positive, from a Rangers perspective, is that interest in players such as Arias smacks of ambition, the Glasgow giants ready to back Clement in the winter even after a summer of heavy spending.
Reports suggest that up to three new players could arrive, with a striker a top priority.