Further to our piece yesterday about the importance of Ryan Jack to Rangers’ cause are, as we’ve discussed earlier, the developments today that the in-form midfielder was sent home from Scotland’s camp due to a knee injury, sustained on duty with the NT and which worsened on Saturday.
We sincerely hope Jack is borderline embellishing this, regardless of issues of professional integrity, as the last thing Steven Gerrard needs is arguably his most influential player out through injury for an indeterminate time.
We explained yesterday how Jack is integral to filling the gaps in Rangers’ midfield and defence, how his running and movement pick up the pockets of turf his team mates constantly leave behind – without Ryan Jack in the team, Rangers’ midfield and defence especially will have holes that aren’t being filled, and the team as a whole would miss his industry and ball use.
And with this new injury, mysteriously picked up while away on Euro 2020 responsibility, the prognosis better be a lot less serious than a swollen knee sounds like.
Evidently it’s a knock, and one bad enough to lay the industrious midfielder out of Scotland duty, but we do hope he is making the most of it in order to get back to Ibrox.
But if Ryan Jack is one thing, honest appears to be it, and we just can’t see him faking anything and we sincerely hope he is available for this Saturday’s clash with in-form Livingston.
Jack’s influence cannot be underestimated and while Steven Gerrard has rotated a lot in recent times, Jack has not been part of it – only the East Fife match was given him as a rest, otherwise he’s started every competitive match this season. Benched for Oxford, although he came on, and rested for Derby, Jack has been an otherwise categorical first-pick every match.
And Steven Gerrard can’t lose him.
While Rangers do have two players similar in nature to him, in Greg Docherty and Scott Arfield, we’re not entirely convinced either of them understand Gerrard’s system as well this season and the simple fact is Jack’s form is probably the most consistent among the whole squad.
An injury to the 27-year old would be a huge crimp on Stevie’s gameplan and we can only cross our fingers the swelling is gone by the time Gary Holt’s men come to Ibrox this weekend.