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Last Updated: Friday, 8 July, 2005, 14:36 GMT 15:36 UK
Argentine striker joins Rangers
Federico Nieto gets used to his Rangers shirt
Rangers say Nieto was wanted by other top clubs
Rangers have signed Argentine striker Federico Nieto on loan until January with a view to a permanent deal.

The 21-year-old arrives from Buenos Aires club Almagro and could win himself a five-year contract at Ibrox.

Rangers manager Alex McLeish said: "He is young and not a seasoned campaigner. So, right away, we are bringing in an unknown quantity.

"We have seen sufficient footage of him and done background checks and believe he can be a very good prospect."

Nieto becomes McLeish's fourth summer signing, following the arrivals of Ian Murray, Brahim Hemdani and Jose-Karl Pierre-Fanfan.

Rangers' new striker scored eight goals in 11 games as Almagro battled against relegation in the Argentine top division.
The fact that it is a loan deal with an option to purchase is ideal for both the club and the player
Rangers chief executive Martin Bain

He had netted 22 times in 31 games the previous season as his side won promotion.

"We hope he can bring a bit of Argentinian flair," added McLeish.

Nieto - described as pacey, good in the air and a clinical finisher - said through an interpreter that he knew of the Old Firm rivalry and that his ambition was to score against Celtic.

Rangers say that they faced competition from Boca Juniors, River Plate and Real Sociedad for his signature.

Ibrox chief executive Martin Bain added: "Subject to the transfer of his registration, we are really pleased to have concluded a deal for such a young and exciting prospect and it has certainly not been easy given the interest from other major clubs.

"The deal is perfectly structured. The fact that it is a loan deal with an option to purchase is ideal for both the club and the player."

Rangers have had some success previously with Argentine strikers, World Cup winner Claudio Caniggia spending two seasons at Ibrox from 2001 after arriving from Dundee.

But Gabriel Amato was in and out of the starting line-up after joining from Real Mallorca in 1998 and moved on to Real Betis two years later.

Meanwhile, Rangers will play the first match of their pre-season tour of Canada on Saturday against a select team of Canadian professional soccer league stars.

It takes place at Dufferin Clark Community Centre in West Vaughan, Toronto, with a 6pm local kick-off time.

The match, however, is closed to the public.


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