A home defeat against Olympique Lyonnais has made things complicated for Rangers ahead of travelling to Prague to lock horns with Sparta Praha in a crucial Europa League group stage encounter. The group itself is quite competitive and the Gers’ past history against Czech opponents is not relieving either.
The last meeting between these two sides occurred back in 1991-92. Both of them clinched home wins but the Light Blues failed to progress on the away goals rule. The outing on Thursday night would reminisce the unforeseen events of last season’s Slavia Praha fixture. There’s no room for racism in football and we believe something similar won’t happen again when the Glasgow giants would visit the Czech capital.
Predicted 4-3-3 Rangers Lineup To Face Sparta Praha
Allan McGregor has been preferred so far for the European fixtures and the veteran custodian is likely to return between the sticks despite Jon McLaughlin’s weekend heroics against Dundee FC.
With Filip Helander sidelined through injury and Jack Simpson not included in the Europa League squad, Steven Gerrard is set to rely on the central defensive pairing of Connor Goldson and Leon Balogun for this midweek encounter. Skipper James Tavernier must exhibit his attacking expertise from the right-hand flank but, at the same time, should offer his presence in defensive duties. Borna Barisic should return to action and replace Calvin Bassey as the left fullback.
John Lundstram has finally begun to showcase his midfield mastery after a frantic start. Ever-present Steven Davis remained as an unused substitute against Dundee and Livingston, but the gaffer might bring the 36-year-old Northern Irishman back into action given his experience and ability to dictate the game from a deep-lying role. Joe Aribo scored a stellar goal versus Dundee to secure all three points at Dens Park and his work ethic, flexibility and creative spark should see him retaining his place in the middle of the park. Glen Kamara must depict his technicality, vision and great passing sense from behind the attacking third.
Ryan Kent continues to be sidelined due to the hamstring injury he picked up against Lyon. Although the Gers would miss his pace, flair and presence from the left-hand flank, the likes of Alfredo Morelos, Kemar Roofe and Ianis Hagi should form a lethal frontline capable of causing menace and scoring goals. Hagi, likely to feature from the right, might switch as a ‘number 10’ allowing Roofe and Morelos to operate more centrally as striking options. Fashion Sakala and Scott Wright might get introduced if the situation demands.