Major blow for Rangers as 2 Gerrard faves injured ahead of Celtic match; he's concerned

By John McGinley

December 26, 2020

Steven Gerrard has admitted he is concerned for Rangers midfielder Scott Arfield ahead of next week’s fixture against Celtic.

Arfield had to be substituted off during today’s match at Ibrox between the league leaders and Hibernian.

His teammate, Ryan Jack, was already known to be struggling with injury as we discussed this morning.

Gerrard delivered a pessimistic assessment of both after the Saturday fixture.

As quoted by The Glasgow Times, he said: “‘I’m worried about it because Scott doesn’t come off the pitch in normal circumstances. He doesn’t normally ask for a physio to come on, he’s one who will just normally get up and go.

“He’s a brave kid so I’m concerned about it. We’ll assess it. He’s got ice on the ankle area but until it actually gets scanned and assessed properly I’ve got nothing for you unfortunately.

“We are having a few issues with Ryan Jack’s recovery and I’m frustrated with it. We don’t have a timeframe on his recovery. We need him back as he is an important player for us.”

Will likely impact Rangers selection vs Celtic

Both players are major figures in Gerrard’s squad, and this update is undoubtedly a blow for them ahead of Neil Lennon and his Bhoys visiting Ibrox on January 2nd.

Arfield has played 31 times this season, scoring seven goals and assisting five more in the process (Transfermarkt).

Jack is also a starting eleven regular when he’s fit.

Both midfielders played during their 2-0 win over the Hoops back in October.

The middle of the park is the area where recent derbies have been won and lost. Generally, it’s Rangers who have been more impressive in those central areas.

Rangers missing two influential performers provides a boost for the Hoops.

Celtic must stay focused on themselves

Any advantage is welcome as we prepare for the trip across the city, but the Celtic squad’s biggest enemy this season has been their own selves.

Our issues have contributed to a dismal campaign so far, not the situation at Rangers or whatever is happening at Ibrox.

The Celtic huddle / (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Lennon and his squad will obviously be aware of any key players missing next week, but they must remain focused on building up their own form.

There are promising signs the team are getting back to last season’s performances, but they still have a lot to prove.

The upcoming seven days are massive.

A win would make it game on in the title race. A defeat is unthinkable. It feels like an all or nothing occasion for the Bhoys.

In other news, Neil Lennon has provided an update on Christopher Jullien’s injury that ruled him out of today’s fixture.