Rangers have been hit by yet another injury blow after Malik Tillman was ruled a doubt at best for the final next week by way of a calf problem, and missed today’s ultimately comfortable win at tough-as-boots Livingston.
The playmaker, a regular under Michael Beale and an increasingly pivotal part of the system under him, was expected to be rested for today’s trip to Almondvale, with a place on the bench likely, but nowhere to be seen Tillman was confirmed injured in yet another blow to a key player, potentially reducing Beale’s options once more.
If there is one area, admittedly, where Rangers are absolutely stocked to the gills, it’s attacking midfield, but unfortunately most of the players are currently unavailable or unfit, with just Todd Cantwell actually fully fit of he, Tillman, Ianis Hagi, Alex Lowry and Scott Arfield, not to mention Tom Lawrence. Lowry, Hagi and Arfield all missed out v Livi albeit without confirmation they’re all struggling.
So if Tillman isn’t fit for next weekend, Rangers’ depth takes a big hit, and we’re down to hoping one or two of the others is available, because the 10 is a critical part of Beale’s setup.
Thankfully we don’t believe the nasty fall and ‘staying down’ for Todd Cantwell in this one amounted to anything, and he did last a fair old while, so hopefully he remains a fit option for next week, but losing a player of his ilk isn’t ideal against Celtic.
Many would argue Tillman is Rangers’ most inventive player, so not having that against the green side of Glasgow is a bit of a blow.
“Tillman had a slight problem with his calf and his hamstring.”
So he’s a huge doubt at best for next week, and we really hope he gets the fitness back in time, because that would be a big miss in light of the lack of definitely available 10s right now.
Thankfully, as we say, Cantwell seems to be ok. Hopefully a couple of the other creative attacking playmakers will be by next weekend too because that would help Rangers enormously.