STEVEN GERRARD has targeted former Liverpool team-mate Lucas as a key signing in his bid to lead Rangers to glory.
Gerrard is planning a major overhaul of the squad he has inherited at Ibrox in a bid to end the dominance of Celtic in Scotland.
Getty – Contributor Steven Gerrard is keen on a reunion with former Liverpool teammate Lucas Leiva
And one of his top priorities is to persuade Lazio to sell Brazilian star Lucas as he looks for a player who can make an impact in the Rangers midfield next season.
Gerrard believes the 31-year-old, who joined Lazio for £5million last summer after ending his ten-year stay on Merseyside, would make a huge impact at Rangers on and off the pitch.
Lazio would be reluctant to sell, but it’s understood he would be keen on a potential move to Ibrox and the chance to work with Gerrard.
The new Gers boss is attempting to bridge the gap on big rivals Celtic, who have won the Scottish Premiership title for the past seven years.
PA:Press Association Rangers want to sign Jermain Defoe on a season-long loan
Lucas would be a major headline signing, and Gerrard is hoping he will also be able to secure a one-year loan deal for former England team-mate Jermain Defoe.
He’s eyeing them to strengthen the spine of his new-look team along with keeper Allan McGregor, who has penned a two-year deal, and top defensive target Martin Skrtel.
GOING PLACES Rangers in talks to land Jason Cummings and Jamie Murphy on permanent deals
Defoe, 35, is just one season into a £65,000-a-week three-year Cherries deal, but boss Eddie Howe could sanction a loan while paying a slice of his salary.
However Brighton have rejected Gers’ offer for centre-back Connor Goldson.
As SunSport revealed yesterday, Gerrard hopes to bring the 25-year-old to Ibrox next season.
Reuters Martin Skrtel is also a target as Gerrard looks to bolster the defence
But Rangers will have to up their bid after their first fell way short of the Premier League club’s valuation.
Meanwhile, Scotland keeper McGregor was delighted after sealing his return to Ibrox on a free from Hull City.
The 36-year-old said: “I’m buzzing and I can’t keep the smile from my face.
“When the chance came it was a no brainer to come back.
“I started training here when I was 12 years old, so it is nice to be back.
“When time goes by it might not happen and you just have to enjoy your football elsewhere.
PA:Press Association Gerrard starts his Rangers reign on June 1 but has already snapped up Scott Arfield and Allan McGregor
“But once you know there is a wee sniff that it could happen then it was exciting.
“It came as a surprise. John Brown gave me a shout two or three weeks ago and I spoke to him and now here I am.
“I don’t know if I have unfinished business. I just want to help the club any way I can. I want to do my best and help other boys and get us back where we belong.
“I want to achieve consistency on the pitch, winning a number of games in a row and hopefully that leads to trophies.
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“There are so many good memories. Even when I was on the bench you couldn’t write the script for some of the things that happened.
“Peter Lovenkrands’ last-minute header against Celtic in the Scottish Cup Final, the 6-1 win over Dunfermline, Helicopter Sunday.
“They still make the hair on the back of my neck stand up and I want to achieve that again.
“Once I knew Rangers were interested it was the only place I wanted to be.”
Rangers FC McGregor completed his Gers return yesterday by penning a two-year deal
McGregor admits he hasn’t yet spoken to new boss Gerrard but can’t wait to work under him and No2 Gary McAllister.
He added: “It is a coup to land Steven Gerrard. Hopefully he can bring us success.
“At the end of the day it’s the boys who have to perform on the pitch, because the manager can only do so much.
Willie Vass Scott Arfield completed his move to Ibrox earlier this week
“Hopefully he can bring that winning mentality back. I’m not saying we didn’t have that, we haven’t had it consistently.
“We have to make Ibrox a fortress where no one wants to come.
“It doesn’t matter who we are playing, we have to go for the three points. That’s what wins you titles.