Aberdeen v Rangers: How the teams could line-up | Surprise Dons starter? | Aribo replacement

Aberdeen host Rangers this evening as clubs play their first fixtures after the end of the rescheduled winter break.

Aberdeen take on Rangers in the Premiership this evening at Pittodrie. (Photo by Alan Harvey / SNS Group)
Aberdeen take on Rangers in the Premiership this evening at Pittodrie. (Photo by Alan Harvey / SNS Group)

The game is live on Sky Sports and both managers will have plenty to ponder with regards to their team selection.

We look at the possible line-ups:

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Aberdeen

The Dons are boosted by the return of Scott Brown and Dylan McGeouch to give Stephen Glass plenty of choice in the centre of the pitch. Memorably, the former Celtic captain scored in the first meeting between the sides.

In addition, Matty Kennedy is also back in the picture following a long-term back injury which kept him out for the first half of the season. It is understood he has impressed the management team in training and will feature in Stephen Glass' plans going forward.

With Marley Watkins out, it wouldn't be such a surprise to see the former St Johnstone ace start with Ryan Hedges, who has been the subject of plenty of transfer speculation, on the other side of the attack in what could be a 4-3-3- or 4-1-4-1 system.

Another bit of good news is Calvin Ramsay is still at the club and returned to the team before the winter break.

Predicted XI: Lewis; Ramsay, McCrorie, Bates, Hayes; Brown, Ferguson, Ojo; Kennedy, Ramirez, Hedges.

Rangers

Giovanni van Bronckhorst has a few decisions to make regarding his line-up. Albeit those decisions are limited due to the number of players he is missing.

Joe Aribo is starring for Nigeria at the African Cup of Nations and will be a huge miss in midfield with the former Charlton star arguably Rangers’ best performer so far this season. Also missing are Steven Davis and Scott Arfield.

Therefore it could see Ianis Hagi take a central role in a 4-2-3-1 with John Lundstram adding extra protection alongside Glen Kamara.

There has been progress for Filip Helander but the game will come too soon having recently returned to training. Ryan Jack and Kemar Roofe will make their return to training this week, confirmed Van Bronckhorst.

The Dutchman has also welcomed Cedric Itten back into the fold following his loan spell in the Bundesliga.

Predicted XI: McGregor; Tavernier, Goldson, Bassey, Barisic; Lundstram, Kamara: Kent, Hagi, Sakala; Morelos.

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