Alfredo Morelos: Lille nowhere near signing Rangers striker - Steven Gerrard

Alfredo Morelos is under contract until summer 2023
Alfredo Morelos is under contract until summer 2023

Lille are "nowhere near" striking a deal for striker Alfredo Morelos and the Colombian should keep his focus on Rangers, says manager Steven Gerrard.

Discussions have been held between the clubs, but no fee has been agreed despite reports in France that the Colombian has agreed personal terms.

Morelos will travel to Aberdeen for Saturday's Premiership season opener.

"This will work itself out if there is an offer that's big enough that the board want to accept," Gerrard said.

"We'll make that decision when it comes. At the moment, we're nowhere near that, so Alfredo is still a Rangers player."

Lille are in the market for a forward having sold Nigeria striker Victor Osimhen to Italian side Napoli on Friday in a deal reported to be worth £73m.

Morelos' presence is particularly vital for Rangers given veteran former England striker Jermain Defoe misses out on the trip to Pittodrie with a hamstring injury.

Gerrard said he will have a say on whether the 24-year-old, who has scored 77 goals in 137 games since arriving in Glasgow three years ago, is sold.

"It is in my hands and it is in my control," he said. "But if a valuation is met and we decide collectively that it's the right thing for the football club then we'll always be prepared in any area.

"It will be a collective decision when we sit down to analyse any bids, but what I can assure you is that the board are not pushing anyone out the door or putting me under pressure to sell."

Rangers are looking to prevent Celtic securing a 10th consecutive title and their manager, who will also be without experienced midfielder Steven Davis through injury, stressed that "we understand the importance of the season" and the need "to hit the ground running".

"We understand there will be a lot more noise around the season this year, so my job is to keep our players focused on Rangers and the challenges that face us," he added.

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