By Mike Slater

15th Sep, 2021 | 7:15am

Predicted Rangers starting XI v Lyon

Rangers start their Europa League group stage journey this week as they welcome Lyon to Ibrox on Thursday evening.

Steven Gerrard has numerous problems in his team with COVID-19 and injuries ravaging his squad throughout.

The Bears came from behind to beat St Johnstone on Saturday and will take that momentum into his huge clash.

Allan McGregor will come into the side after missing out yet again for Jon McLaughlin in the Scottish Premiership.

There will be plenty of rotation in the back four, with James Tavernier and Leon Balogun keeping their spots.

Connor Goldson has been handed a huge boost though and will be available to play after his isolation period [The Sun].

Filip Helander and Jack Simpson are all likely out of this one, so it will be Borna Barisic to come in on the left and leave Calvin Bassey on the bench.

Steven Davis will be holding in midfield and he will be vital in terms of keeping Lyon out, rather than recycling possession as usual.

Joe Aribo and Glen Kamara will continue in midfield, completing our best three in the middle of the park.

John Lundstram and Scott Arfield will be ready to come in if needed off the bench, with Ianis Hagi missing out due to COVID-19.

Ryan Kent and Kemar Roofe usually turn it on even more during these European nights, and we wouldn’t put it past them to create more highlights on Thursday.

Who better to play in the middle of those than Alfredo Morelos? El Bufalo is ready and many will be backing him to be the difference-maker, fingers crossed.

Here’s how we expect them to line up…

In other Rangers news, ‘Sensational’ – Michael Stewart stunned by what ‘Incredible’ Bears star did this week