Saints are gearing up to hunt for a new football chief with Ross Wilson looking increasingly likely to move to Rangers.

The club’s director of football operations is expected to head north of the border to join the Scottish giants.

If the move goes ahead Wilson will take up the role of director of football at Ibrox.

That will leave Saints with the task of finding a replacement to set the strategy and vision for the football side of the club and, crucially, oversee transfer policy.

The Daily Echo understands that Wilson’s potential departure is being seen as an opportunity to properly start afresh at St Mary’s.

A series of recent changes behind the scenes first saw Wilson’s boss, Les Reed, leave along with Martin Hunter. Chairman Ralph Krueger has also since departed.

Martin Semmens is now running the club on a day-to-day basis in his role as chief executive and Wilson’s departure will give him the chance to steer the football side of the business in the direction he wants by making his own appointment.

Wilson was moved into a front and centre position on the football operations side to ensure a sense of continuity after Reed left and to steer the club through the summer transfer window.

With that having been and gone there is a feeling at St Mary’s that now would be an appropriate moment for change to occur.

At this stage the expectation is that there is unlikely to be a huge amount of business done in the January window due to budgets having been spent in the summer and little prospect of selling players surplus to Ralph Hasenhuttl’s requirements.

That means the new appointment would have the chance to size up everything at the club including the first team playing staff ready for a more dramatic overhaul next summer.

Saints had hoped that they might be able to make more radical changes to their squad before the start of this season but that did not prove possible.

Wilson joined Saints as director of scouting and recruitment in 2015.

The club have faced criticism for several comparatively expensive signings during his time at Saints which have as yet failed to produce the desired results.

The likes of Guido Carrillo, Wesley Hoedt and Mario Lemina haven’t really worked out as big money deals, though this summer’s capture of Moussa Djenepo looks like being a far more astute one.

It has been reported that Rangers are so keen on Wilson’s appointment that manager Steven Gerrard has also been enlisted to try and persuade him to move.