Rangers were invincibles last season en route to conquering the coveted Premiership crown. They drew an end to Celtic’s decade-long monopoly in Scottish football and are favourites this term to defend the title after an impressive pre-season. A 2-1 win against Real Madrid must have uplifted their spirit ahead of hosting Livingston on Saturday lunchtime.
Livi, however, emerged as one of the most exciting outfits last season under David Martindale. It won’t be easy for them to cause an upset at Ibrox with the fans in the stands, although a few key absentees might make it a bit tricky for Steven Gerrard’s juggernaut. Alfredo Morelos is absent due to an extended break following Copa America 2021, whereas the absence of Joe Aribo and Kemar Roofe against Los Blancos casts doubts over the availability of the pair. Ryan Jack is still recovering after going under the knife to get rid of his long-standing calf problems.
Predicted 4-3-3 Rangers Lineup To Face Livingston
Allan McGregor will be 40 in a few months time but is still going strong between the sticks with his agility and reflexes. He should retain the ‘number 1’ status for at least one more campaign.
Teenage sensation Nathan Patterson put an incredible shift last season during the injury absence of James Tavernier. He would keep on knocking on the door and challenge the skipper for the starting role. Connor Goldson is expected to extend his stay by penning a new deal and the Englishman would continue to impress in the heart of the backline alongside Filip Helander. Borna Barisic must retain his left-back spot and keep causing menace with marauding runs, set-pieces and crosses inside the box.
Amid Jack’s absence and Nnamdi Ofoborh’s heart issues, the gaffer would once again rely on veteran Steven Davis in the middle of the park. The iconic Northern Irishman is tipped to orchestrate the tempo from his deep-lying role, whereas the supporters might see John Lundstram making his official debut following a Bosman move from Sheffield United. Glen Kamara should dominate the midfield game with his technicality, vision and box-to-box movements.
Fashion Sakala is already making his presence known high up the pitch and might get the nod over Cedric Itten to spearhead the attack. Ianis Hagi should operate from the right-hand flank if Roofe fails to recover in time, however, the outstanding Ryan Kent must exhibit his excellence from the left as he has done so far in Rangers colours.