Back to back defeats against Malmo and Dundee United have put Rangers under immense pressure ahead of hosting the Swedish side at Ibrox. They lost 2-1 on the road in the first leg fixture, and therefore, needs to overcome the deficit on Tuesday night to keep their Champions League hopes alive via playoffs.
A lapse of concentration saw them conceding twice in five minutes despite dominating the game otherwise. A late strike from Steven Davis brought them back into contention, however, one mistake this midweek might shatter their dreams of securing a place among the European elites. Malmo looked comfortable sitting deep and the Gers must exhibit more purpose and precision high up the pitch.
Predicted 4-3-3 Rangers Lineup To Face Malmo
Steven Gerrard has lined up Jon McLaughlin in league games but is expected to rely on Allan McGregor against the European opponents. The veteran custodian must maintain his expertise between the sticks and register a cleansheet with timely stops.
Skipper James Tavernier is a constant threat down the right-hand flank with his overlapping runs, crosses and set-pieces. But it’s high time he concentrates on his defensive duties having cost his side twice in the past couple of outings. Borna Barisic should occupy the left-back role, whereas the central defensive pairing of Filip Helander and Connor Goldson must remain unaltered. Helander was impressive against his boyhood club, but the latter has been struggling a bit since the inception of the 2021-22 term.
Glen Kamara is serving a three-match ban for his tunnel ‘assault’ on Slavia Prague’s Ondrej Kudela. His absence was felt at Stadion and the gaffer would continue to miss his prized asset in the middle of the park. Steven Davis is still going strong in his mid-thirties and must retain his deep-lying midfield status amid the injury absence of Ryan Jack and Nnamdi Ofoborh.
Neither Scott Arfield nor John Lundstram has done enough to cement a starting status, yet the ex-Sheffield United star might be handed another start in the absence of the Finnish professional. Joe Aribo was back against the Tangerines but should get restored in a box-to-box role over featuring as a wide attacker against the Scania-based outfit.
Although Alfredo Morelos could not make a difference at Tannadice, the Bears would believe that he would find the net more than once in the upcoming European encounter. Ryan Kent is working hard to be a part of the build-ups, also the emergence of Scott Wright must have relieved Gerrard following the injury woe of Ianis Hagi early into the season opener.