Rangers and Michael Beale are preparing for a monolithic clash, as they take on bitter rivals Celtic in the final of the Scottish League Cup.
Rangers are expected to be without a plethora of first team players for the final, including Robbie McCrorie, Filip Helander, John Souttar, John Lundstram, Scott Arfield, Steven Davis, Tom Lawrence, Ryan Jack and Ridvan Yilmaz. Additionally, Nnamdi Ofoborh is also unavailable for selection.
On top of this, Kemar Roofe is a doubt – he came on as a substitute in Rangers’ 3-0 win over Livingston, but it is unclear whether he is fully fit at this point or not.
In a press conference according to The Scotsman, Beale said: “This season our squad has been pulled apart by injuries. If I go through it, at the moment there’s still no Robbie McCrorie, no [Filip] Helander, no [John] Souttar, no Ridvan [Yilmaz], no Arfield, no Lundstram, no Jack.
“Kemar Roofe has only just come back. Tom Lawrence is out. Like most things, a couple of days before the game I’ll get a take.
“Roofe had a slight issue as well after the weekend unfortunately so we won’t be too far away from the team that played last weekend. It wasn’t a dress rehearsal but there could be one or two more that declare themselves fit. I need to make sure they are because it’s important there’s not a bravado around it, that they genuinely are fit.
“You can’t be missing the players not there, you have to work with the ones in front of you. I’m really pleased with how they’re doing at the moment.”
Rangers and Celtic have played each other on two occasions this season. The first was a disaster for the Gers, as the Celts ran out as 4-0 winners, but Rangers gave them a much tougher game in the second encounter. The match ended 2-2, despite the Light Blues leading late on.
When all the betting odds are compiled, the bookmakers have given Rangers a 25/11 chance of winning. Celtic, meanwhile, have shorter odds at 6/5 – the draw (within 90 minutes) is rated at 45/17.