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John Souttar facing Hearts 'hell' as Rangers bound defender warned over Tynecastle stay beyond January

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Paul Ritchie fears John Souttar could suffer six months of Hearts hell and lose his place with Scotland if Rangers don’t stump up for him now.

Jambos say they will only do January business if the Ibrox side pay a ‘significant and satisfactory offer’.Gers are weighing up whether to seal a deal now for pre-contract capture Souttar.Ritchie found himself packed off to Bolton on loan for the second half of 1999/2000 by Jambos gaffer Jim Jefferies when it became the worst kept secret in Scotland that he was Ibrox-bound from Tynecastle at the end of that season.And he is concerned that for Souttar it could be either a cut-price transfer to Ibrox before the transfer window closes in a fortnight – or many messy months at Tynecastle.Ritchie warned: “If there’s no deal between the clubs, John will spend the next six months in a very difficult situation.“It won’t be a pleasant environment to be involved in games if he doesn’t get sold. “John knows the Hearts supporters.

They love the club, would die for their club and are not slow to tell people how they feel about them, as I know myself. “ Robbie Neilson rates him very highly. “If he feels that a fit John Souttar is mentally capable for the next few months, I believe he’ll play him.“But that’s difficult for any human being – knowing that he won’t be there next season and playing in front of fans who won’t give him an easy ride. “But I don’t know how Hearts will treat him. “We’ve seen players banished to the reserves or youths.

That’s not something I’d wish on anyone.“I’m not saying that is what will happen but I know from experience that the manager puts the club first.“That’s why Jim loaned me to Bolton.

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