Hearts defender John Souttar has been left out of the Jambos squad for the lunchtime Scottish Cup clash as a move to Rangers appears to be edging closer.

Souttar has already signed a pre-contract with the champions but could make the move across the M8 before the transfer window closes at the end of the month.

England U21 v Scotland U21 - UEFA European Under 21 Championship Qualifiers
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With Robbie Neilson’s side facing Auchinleck Talbot this afternoon, the Scotland defender won’t be involved as Hearts avoid making him cup-tied and potentially delaying his move to Rangers.

The Tynecastle side were reportedly looking for £500k for Souttar to make his move this month and Robbie Neilson has previously insisted that he’d have no problem playing him between now and the end of the season.

The central defender was involved in midweek against St Johnstone but his absence this afternoon suggests he may well have made his final appearance in maroon.

Hearts are strong favourites against the West of Scotland side and after losing to Brora Rangers last year, Neilson’s side will be keen to avoid a repeat.

Jambos fans have made their feelings know about Souttar’s imminent move to Rangers and the prospect of getting a decent fee for the Scotland international should soften the blow of losing him a little.

According to the BBC, Rangers are reported to have offered around £300,000 for the player to move during January.

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