Rival player who impressed vs Celtic out for months
Interesting news from our league rivals as Rangers centre-back Filip Helander is to be out until December with a knee problem.
The Swedish international defender has undergone surgery after leaving the pitch on a stretcher against St Johnstone on Saturday.
Helander has been our rivals’ best centre-back so far this season. As well as scoring the winner in the recent Glasgow Derby, Helander proved a frustrating figure before Kyogo Furuhashi was switched through the middle.
And in a massive blow to Rangers, Steven Gerrard said the following via Sky Sports:
“Helander will be missing. He has had surgery in the last 24-48 hours to fix an issue that they spotted when they went inside to have a look so he will be missing for the foreseeable future.
“The rest is as it was so we are in good health besides Fil.”
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Rangers have since released a tweet stating the player would be out until December.
Rival star out for several months as Celtic look to kick on
It’s a monumental hit for Rangers this. Helander has been their stalwart this season, more so than fellow centre-back Connor Goldson. It gives the Rangers manager a big defensive headache over the next couple of months.
The Ibrox club will have a packed schedule consisting of both domestic and European matches. He would’ve wanted the opportunity to rotate his centre-backs throughout that period.
Now, he only has the likes of Goldson, Leon Balogun, and the rarely-seen Jack Simpson to choose from. And the latter pair certainly have mistakes in them when playing through the centre.
Of course, we’re one to talk at the moment it would seem. Celtic have a host of injury problems, even if Ange Postecoglou believes that most will clear up over the next week or so [Celtic TV]. Helander, however, has a more longer-term problem.
It’s all the more important then for Celtic to ensure they keep winning all domestic matches in the coming weeks. It’s too early to go ruling Helander out of the new year derby at Celtic Park. But it does give us an opportunity to pile early pressure onto our rivals.
We need them to feel us breathing down their necks this season, especially after the derby defeat. And with Helander out, it’s vital we ensure their defence is under big pressure every time they go out onto the pitch.