Sunday, February 5, 2023

McLaughlin To Start? | Predicted 4-2-3-1 Rangers Lineup To Face Aberdeen

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Pratyay Maitra
A sports enthusiast in his mid-twenties who reads, breathes, as well as dreams (mostly) about football and attempts to share his views with the fanatics by jotting it down. Prefers to learn through extensive interaction, communication and exploration. So don't be in a quandary and SHOOT.

Rangers are flying high in the Premiership under Michael Beale who has recently succeeded Giovanni van Bronckhorst as the new Ibrox chief. Although they are way behind Celtic in the league race, the Cup glory is well within their grip as they would lock horns with Aberdeen at Hampden Park on Sunday afternoon.

Rangers might have an edge in this semifinal fixture, but the Dons should step up their show overcoming an array of disappointing results. They suffered a shocking home defeat last month when Scott Arfield scored twice in injury time to turn things around in the Gers’ favour and the gaffer Jim Goodwin must motivate his men to script revenge for the Pittodrie setback.

Predicted 4-2-3-1 Rangers Lineup To Face Aberdeen

Defence

The Glasgow giants have two veteran Scotsmen between the sticks who have been rotated in recent weeks. Allan McGregor has been the first-choice custodian, but a steady performance against Dundee United could see Jon McLaughlin retain his place on back-to-back occasions.

Jon McLaughlin

The Light Blues now have a stable backline after months of injury nightmares. Skipper James Tavernier has been ever-present down the right-hand side, but they have both Connor Goldson and Ben Davies back in the heart of the backline post-winter break. Borna Barisic is expected to retain his left fullback role with Ridvan Yilmaz still sidelined with a hamstring strain. Long-term absentees John Souttar and Filip Helander are a few weeks away from regaining match fitness. Exciting academy duo Leon King and Adam Devine, as well as versatile James Sands, should be there among substitutes.

Midfield

Glen Kamara and Scott Arfield are there to pull the strings from the centre of the pitch, but the presence of John Lundstram and Ryan Jack as the ‘double pivot’ would offer more stability and composure both in terms of marshalling the defence and creating attacking transitions. Steven Davis is ruled out for the season after rupturing his ACL.

Fashion Sakala is enjoying a blistering scoring form. His pace and swift footwork should cause menace in the Aberdeen half. Ryan Kent must keep his place down the left, and so should Malik Tillman who has been a revelation as a ‘number 10’. Scott Wright and Rabbi Matondo could be deployed as second-half substitutes, but the likes of Tom Lawrence and Ianis Hagi are still working on rebuilding fitness following a long injury layoff.

Attack

Antonio Colak was back in the starting XI versus the Tangerines and the manager should keep relying on him high up the pitch ahead of Alfredo Morelos and Kemar Roofe.

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