By Jason Jones

19th Dec, 2019 | 4:35pm

Gerrard rules 6'4" Rangers colossus out of crunch Old Firm clash v Celtic

This season’s title race looks like it could go right the way down to the wire, and if that is the case, then the upcoming Old Firm clash at the end of this month could prove to be a defining moment in the campaign for both Rangers and Celtic.

A win for either side would set them up nicely going into the new year, and really send out a message as to where the momentum lies between the bitter rivals.

With that in mind, it’s important that the Gers have as many options available to them as possible in terms of their playing staff.

So it will come as a real blow to learn that Swedish defender Filip Helander is unlikely to be ready in time to play any part in that game.

According to Steven Gerrard, as quoted by the Scottish Sun, the 6’4″ colossus will be out until after the turn of the new year, meaning that he will miss out on the top of the table meeting between the two Glaswegian clubs.

The 26-year-old has been a virtual ever-present at the back for Gerrard’s men since the end of October, and not having him available for such an important clash will be a real disappointment for the manager and the Ibrox faithful alike.

You need only look at his domineering displays in the Europa League this season, where he has averaged 4.4 clearances and 3.4 aerial duels won, as per Whoscored, to realise just how big a presence he is at the back for the Light Blues when he is available.

In his absence Gerrard has turned to Nikola Katic, with the Croatian impressing in his own right, but all things considered, you would expect the boss to prefer to have as many options available to him as possible.

In other news, Ally McCoist predicts that Rangers star will seal Ibrox exit in the summer.