Manchester United have stepped up their interest in Allan McGregor after chief scout Martin Ferguson watched the Rangers No1 in action in Valencia this week, Sportsmail can reveal.
The Premiership giants have been scouring Europe for two goalkeepers, with Aalesunds’ Anders Lindegaard, Atletico Madrid’s David de Gea, Bayer Leverkusen’s Rene Adler and Manuel Neuer of Schalke all coming under scrutiny.
However, there has now been contact between Old Trafford and Ibrox following the 28-year-old’s superb performances for both club and country this season, most memorably in the Euro 2012 qualifier against Spain, which Ferguson also attended.
With Rangers yesterday finalising a new deal to keep Ibrox understudy Neil Alexander until 2013, the path is clear for McGregor to head south should they receive an irresistible offer, albeit they would prefer to extend his contract beyond the three years that currently remain on it.
McGregor, who will face his suitors when United travel to Ibrox on Champions League duty on November 24, has already ousted Craig Gordon as Scotland No 1 after returning from the international wilderness following the Boozegate affair – and Sir Alex Ferguson sees him as a potential successor to 40-year-old Edwin van der Sar.
Although United will be concerned that McGregor’s often troubled private life has seen him become tabloid fodder in Scotland, his displays have become impossible to ignore.
Now that Alexander has committed himself to the club, Rangers will hope that Kenny Miller and Sasa Papac – both free agents at the end of this season – follow suit.
‘I am absolutely delighted that we have now got it all signed and sealed and we can concentrate on the football,’ said 32-year-old Alexander. ‘I’ve always said that I am happy at Rangers. As a young boy growing up, you look at Rangers as one of the top clubs in the world. I have worked my whole career to get to a club like Rangers, so why would I leave?’