We’re delighted to welcome former Rangers manager Alex McLeish as our exclusive columnist. Each week he’ll be giving his views on the biggest talking points at Ibrox…

Alex McLeish has questioned the fitness of Rangers midfielder Ryan Jack, claiming he has “serious doubts” he could complete a full season.

The Scottish international was expected to return from injury over Christmas but has suffered another setback and remains out.

McLeish believes Jack will be a big miss in the Old Firm clash with Celtic, but that Steven Gerrard has enough quality to cover that gap.

Rangers

Speaking exclusively to Ibrox News, McLeish said, “Yes, I feel like the form he came into, and playing for Scotland as well, performing really well, I could see a difference in his game, his reading of the game.

“He’s that type of player who is always in the position to mop and tidy up, he’s actually read the game extremely well. You can see how he’s grown into the jersey at Rangers over the last couple of years.

“The crucial question is, can he sustain a full season? Or three-quarters of a season? That is now a serious doubt if Rangers are losing him again then Ryan seems to have an ongoing problem.

“I think he’s a miss, but the midfield form has been brilliant.”

Jack last featured for the Bears at the end of November in the 4-0 win over Aberdeen, and his worries will be starting to concern Steven Gerrard.

The 28-year-old can’t afford to have ongoing problems at Ibrox, with the likes of Glen Kamara getting better and better, leaving his spot in serious doubt.

Steven Davis has outperformed Jack in every category this season according to WhoScored, averaging more tackles, interceptions and clearances.

Gerrard is all about attack, leaving one defensive midfield spot – one that Davis is well and truly making his own in the absence of Jack.

In other Rangers news, Gerrard shares verdict on possible mid-season break for Bears

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