Despite a dismal 3-1 defeat in the League Cup semifinal against Hibernian, the Rangers stars put Giovanni van Bronckhorst’s philosophy into practice with an incredible 2-0 Europa League victory against Sparta Prague. The result has cemented their place in the European knockouts and the upbeat Gers must maintain their supremacy in the Premiership standings with a win over Livingston on Sunday lunchtime.
Livi, on the other hand, have overcome from a dreadful start and are unbeaten in their last five league encounters including a stalemate at Parkhead versus Celtic. Although the Light Blues have won twice already so far this term, the contest at Almondvale would motivate David Martindale’s men to cause an upset in their own backyard.
Predicted 4-2-3-1 Rangers Lineup To Face Livingston
Allan McGregor would be 40 in a couple of months but is still going strong between the sticks having pulled off some stunning saves against Sparta Prague. His heroic double save earned Rangers a place in the next round of the Europa League competition and the gaffer, therefore, must hand him the ‘number 1’ status for the upcoming fixtures.
Despite the emergence of Nathan Patterson, skipper James Tavernier is irreplaceable down the right-hand flank for his impact with overlapping runs, crosses and set-piece attributes. Borna Barisic should retain his place down the left, however, Leon Balogun and Filip Helander continue to be sidelined with their respective injury concerns. Connor Goldson must take charge at the heart of the backline and Calvin Bassey needs to deliver once again as a makeshift centre-half. Jack Simpson is likely to miss out given the headstrong defensive display from the young Nigerian.
Bronckhorst tweaked his 4-3-3 formation and shifted to a 4-2-3-1 in the midweek tie against the Czech outfit. The double-pivot of Steven Davis and Glen Kamara would add depth, balance as well as experience in the middle of the park. Davis is expected to marshall the defensive line while operating as a deep-lying playmaker, whereas the technicality and vision of Kamara would inject mobility and variation. The likes of Ryan Jack, Juninho Bacuna, Scott Arfield and John Lundstram would remain among the substitutes as the other midfield options.
Joe Aribo has settled down well in an advanced midfield role and his work ethic and versatility would allow the manager to alter his strategy over the course of ninety minutes. Ianis Hagi has flourished of late and should operate from the right as he has done so far in previous outings. Ryan Kent would look to cause menace in Livi defence with his pace, power and prowess down the left-hand flank.
With Kemar Roofe ruled out for Rangers trip to Livingston, Alfredo Morelos must spearhead the attack following his brace versus Sparta Prague on Thursday night. Fashion Sakala might get introduced at some stage as a ‘super sub’.