By support

9th Mar, 2018 | 8:20am

Blow for Rangers with January signing clinging onto hope that he can play v Celtic - report

Rangers January signing Russell Martin is a major doubt for the clash with Celtic on Sunday and is set to miss the game with a back injury, according to a report.

The Scottish Sun explains that the Norwich City enforcer was hopeful of recovering in time for the Glasgow City derby but after missing training on Thursday and instead having treatment, it would seem that time is running out for the player.

The report does claim that he’s still “clinging onto hope” that he’ll be fit to play as he’s desperate to take part in the Old Firm clash.

If he is out, Bruno Alves is likely to come in for the crocked ace, despite struggling himself with a number of injuries throughout the course of the campaign.

The experienced Portuguese enforcer was selected for last weekend’s Scottish Cup win over Falkirk where he played alongside David Bates.

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Should Martin miss out as is looking increasingly likely, it will be a massive blow for the Gers. Bates and Martin have already created a  strong centre-back partnership which they would have needed to face a free-flowing Celtic attack. With Alves struggling for game-time this season, to come into such a big game could be a big ask for the 36-year-old and the pace of Scott Sinclair and Moussa Dembele could destroy Alves and expose the Gers. Rangers need their strongest XI to win this fixture and they are weakened by this loss.

In other Rangers news, in form attacker axed in four changes: Best possible XI v Celtic. 

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