Rangers have been hit by another TWO injury blows after both rising star Ridvan Yilmaz and defender Ben Davies were withdrawn from Aberdeen duty.
The Turk pulled his hamstring on the seventh minute immediately requiring a replacement in Borna Barisic, but Giovanni van Bronckhorst has confirmed he will be out for two weeks, albeit this is a preliminary estimate and in reality that could be his 2022 done like half the rest of the squad’s.
Meanwhile Davies once again ‘felt something’ as he did at Anfield and played on till half time, on this occasion withdrawing, Scott Arfield replacing him.
It adds up to yet more injury blows for Giovanni van Bronckhorst who was already without 10+ players, with added concerns about John Lundstram and James Tavernier’s fitness still lingering, so to lose two more players is utterly preposterous and creates headaches for the manager.
Saturday’s performance from the team was extremely promising, with fans happy with the effort and quality on display, and that was done without both of these players for the majority, but it deeply thins the squad and means Rangers now only have zero recognised senior defenders definitely fit going forward.
Just Leon King is fit, while James Sands can of course fill in there too, but it’s far from ideal, and Sands was widely praised for his impressive performance centrally which allowed John Lundstram to properly play his game at Ibrox. But it leaves us, ultimately, with exactly 5 fit defenders – Devine, Tavernier, Sands, King and Barisic, which really isn’t much going forward.
We could really use some returns soon because the squad’s resources were already at breaking point and this just makes things even worse – even if the players available are decent, there’s absolutely nothing in reserve at all.
No, that’s now around a dozen players unavailable to Gio, but then, if the result v Aberdeen is anything to go by, Rangers should have enough in the tank against all but Celtic. But equally, Rangers’ squad needs depth and having little to call upon in backup is far from ideal.
What on earth is going on with our fitness?