Steven Gerrard confirms Rangers team news ahead of clash v Livingston
Steven Gerrard has confirmed Borna Barisic, Scott Arfield, Leon Balogun and Filip Helander will all be missing for Rangers on Wednesday night when they take on Livingston in their penultimate fixture of the season.
The Light Blues will take on Livi at Almondvale in a 6pm kick-off but will have to do so with their defence ravaged by injuries.
Speaking ahead of the trip to Livingston, Gerrard told Rangers’ Twitter account: “Borna is out for Wednesday.
“Balogun and Helander won’t make the last two games.
“Arfield is out on the pitch and the aim is to hopefully be involved on Saturday.
“[Nikola] Katic is back from Croatia and progressing well.
“[Ryan] Jack has had successful surgery and arrived home yesterday.”
🎙️ SG: Borna is out for Wednesday. Balogun & Helander won't make the last two games. Arfield is out on the pitch and the aim is to hopefully be involved on Saturday.
Katic is back from Croatia and progressing well. Jack has had successful surgery and arrived home yesterday.
— Rangers Football Club (@RangersFC) May 11, 2021
On top of those six players being out, right-back Nathan Patterson and left-back Calvin Bassey are still banned for their COVID breach earlier this year.
Gerrard has a decent number of centre-back options but with Balogun, Helander and Katic all out, it means he has just Connor Goldson and Jack Simpson to choose from.
However, both of his left-backs are also out of action so we think that maybe Simpson will move to the left-hand side of the back-four.
If that is the case, there’s a glaring hole in the middle of the back-line. Who could that be filled by?
Is it time for Leon King to earn his first Rangers start and his first appearance in the Scottish Premiership?
The 17-year-old made his Gers debut in November when he came off the bench for the final stages of the Scottish League Cup win over Falkirk.
He’s been on the bench plenty of times so the rarely-seen youngster may get a big chance to shine this week at Livingston.
And, if injuries are still a big issue going into the final day clash with Aberdeen at the weekend, the teenager may also be used on trophy day at Ibrox.
We’ll see what happens and how Gerrard tinkers with things because it doesn’t look too promising in terms of selection at the back.
Let’s hope young King can stand up to the test.