Rangers: Youth prospect Billy Gilmour opts for summer switch to Chelsea

Rangers youth Billy Gilmour
Rangers youth Billy Gilmour played for Scotland in the Victory Shield

Rangers youth Billy Gilmour has agreed to join Chelsea in the summer.

The 15-year-old midfielder will sign a professional contract with the Stamford Bridge club when he turns 16 after the two clubs agreed a "significant fee".

Rangers offered Gilmour a contract, but the Scotland youth international has opted to move to London.

"When he made clear his desire to move to the Premier League, it was important we maximised the commercial value for him," Rangers said in a statement.

Chelsea were one of a number of clubs to pursue Gilmour's signature after the midfielder impressed scouts with his performances for Rangers' youth sides and the Scotland under-16 team.

Mark Warburton and his successor as Rangers manager, Pedro Caixinha, also included the player in first-team training sessions, with the latter meeting Gilmour's parents to try to persuade the player to stay at Ibrox.

He will now follow the path taken by Islam Feruz, who left Celtic for Chelsea at 16, although the Scotland Under-21 cap has spent most of his time at the club out on loan.

"The club's preference would have been for Billy to stay at Rangers," the Ibrox club said in a statement.

"But this agreement will provide Rangers with a significant sum for a 15-year-old player who has yet to play first-team football and further significant amounts could be due based on milestones being reached.

"We are pleased with this outcome and believe this deal represents good value for Rangers.

"That he was sought after by many Premier League clubs and, indeed, a number of the largest clubs in Europe, further demonstrates the quality of player now being produced by the academy.

"Everyone at Rangers wishes Billy well for his future."

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