23-year-old centre-back signed long-term contract with Rangers

Steven Gerrard was the driving force behind the surprise new deal handed by Rangers to Nikola Katic. Scottish club announced yesterday that the 23-year-old defender had put pen to paper on a new four-year deal that ties him to the Ibrox until 2023.

English manager pushed for Nikola to be rewarded with a significant pay rise for establishing himself as a key man for the Gers. The new contract is worth multi-millions of pounds and cements Katic’s place as one of the senior footballers and bigger earners at the club.

U21 Croatia international has impressed as a regular alongside Connor Goldson in the heart of Steven Gerrard’s back-line since his arrival in June 2018. He originally signed a four-year deal, but that has now been improved to reflect the progress he has made in Rangers’ improving side.

Steven spoke warmly of Croatian defender’s professionalism and match preparation and backed him to use the new contract as motivation to show why he deserves to be seen as an elite footballer in Scotland. Nikola has featured 41 times for the Gers since his arrival from NK Slaven Belupo in the summer of last year.