Tonight’s hard-fought Betfred Cup win over Partick came at a potentially high cost, with yet more possible casualties adding to Rangers’ ever-growing injury list, propelling the situation into a mild crisis.
Rangers got to the semis by hook or by crook, but it was not without drawbacks, as on top of Jordan Rossiter (knee), Niko Kranjcar (knee), and Lee Wallace (groin), captain Bruno Alves was withdrawn early with a suspected calf strain only to be followed by deputising left back Declan John with a possible hamstring.
Alves’ calf saw heavy strapping casting significant doubt over the Portuguese stopper’s chances of making the massive Old Firm clash on Saturday, while John’s thigh saw similar making his own likelihood of lining up somewhat reduced.
Naturally these injuries will be fully assessed in the morning under the medical supervision of Auchenhowie’s finest, and it may just have been precautionary withdrawals which led to the duo’s exit tonight.
But equally one would think it would have to be pretty serious to force a warrior like Alves from the pitch, and similarly John would have wanted to hold on to his first start for the full 90 minutes.
Meanwhile Ryan Jack provided an injury scare himself, going down late on with apparent cramp, and was seen to pull his socks down while gingerly seeing out the 120 minutes. Hopefully that was just as a result of a long night because Rangers could do without losing him too come Saturday.
With no Jordan Rossiter in deputy, Rangers would be completely exposed in defensive midfield.
Here is hoping all these instances recover in time for the weekend.