Rangers are yet to lose a game since Michael Beale got appointed as the new Ibrox chief replacing Giovanni van Bronckhorst. Although the majority of their victories have not been smooth, the Light Blues are fighting with great vigour to grind out results. They must do so once more on Saturday evening in the Scottish Cup 4th Round contest against St. Johnstone.
Rangers will travel to McDiarmid Park for this fixture before hosting them next weekend in the Premiership. The previous meeting on the road ended 2-1 in favour of the Saints and the Light Blues, therefore, must exhibit more resilience to avoid a similar setback. A win would keep the hopes alive for a ‘Cup double’ as the Gers have already progressed to the League Cup final.
Predicted 4-2-3-1 Rangers Lineup To Face St Johnstone
Beale has rotated Allan McGregor and Jon McLaughlin between the sticks. It is difficult to predict at this point, but the manager might opt for McGregor’s experience for this Cup tie.
Skipper James Tavernier is irreplaceable down the right with his overlapping runs, crosses, cut insides and set-piece traits. Despite being vulnerable at times, Connor Goldson and Ben Davies have formed a decent chemistry of late in the heart of the backline. Borna Barisic threatens with his marauding runs and passes into the final third, but the Croatian must also concentrate on his defensive duties while operating as a left fullback.
Ryan Jack, who was rested against Kilmarnock at Rugby Park, should return to the starting XI for this weekend’s encounter. The Scotsman is likely to partner with John Lundstram deep down the midfield and form the ‘double pivot’ ahead of James Sands and Glen Kamara.
Ryan Kent’s resurgence is a massive boost for the Gers as he is once again causing menace in the opponents’ half with his dribbles and directness from the left-hand flank. Fashion Sakala, a revelation down the right, is contributing week in, and week out either by finding the net or setting it up for his teammates in the attacking third. Malik Tillman should reclaim his ‘number 10’ status after being dropped for Scott Arfield on Wednesday night.
Antonio Colak was not risked on the artificial turf, but he should be in contention for minutes against the Saints. However, Alfredo Morelos must spearhead the attack following his match-winning display versus Killie with a brace and an assist. Another injury misfortune is likely to keep Kemar Roofe sidelined for a few more weeks.