Giovanni van Bronckhorst addresses injury concerns for Rangers ahead of crucial week in Europa League and Scottish Cup

Rangers’ morale-boosting return to winning ways in Paisley on Sunday was marred by injuries suffered by John Lundstram and Filip Helander.

Rangers defender Filip Helander is treated for an injury before being substituted at the end of the first half of the Premiership win over St Mirren in Paisley on Sunday. (Photo by Craig Williamson / SNS Group)
Rangers defender Filip Helander is treated for an injury before being substituted at the end of the first half of the Premiership win over St Mirren in Paisley on Sunday. (Photo by Craig Williamson / SNS Group)

Midfielder Lundstram, who has been one of the most effective performers in Giovanni van Bronckhorst’s side in recent weeks, lasted just 26 minutes of the 4-0 win over St Mirren before limping off with a groin problem. Rangers manager van Bronckhorst remains hopeful Lundstram can recover in time for the second leg of the Europa League quarter-final against Braga at Ibrox on Thursday night when the Scottish champions will attempt to overturn a 1-0 first leg deficit.

But the extent of Helander’s foot injury, which saw the Swedish international defender replaced in first half stoppage time, is less clear. Helander, who is not registered in Rangers’ Europa League squad after previous injury problems earlier in the season, will have medical checks before learning if he will be available again for next Sunday’s Scottish Cup semi-final against Celtic at Hampden.

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“John felt something in his groin but hopefully we can make him ready for Thursday,” said van Bronckhorst. “But Filip is having a scan at the moment. He fell a little bit awkward on his foot but hopefully in the next few hours or by tomorrow we’ll know the extent of his injury.”

Van Bronckhorst was satisfied by his team’s performance against St Mirren as they responded to consecutive defeats against Celtic and Braga in their previous two games. Kemar Roofe scored a hat-trick and Joe Aribo completed the scoring to leave Rangers six points behind Celtic in the title race with five games remaining.

"We said before the game we needed to win this game and get back to winning ways and we did,” he added. “We won 4-0, no goals against us and I think it gives us confidence for Thursday and the games ahead.

"We’re confident because we won today. But we’re also confident that we can get a win at home in Europe like we’ve showed in the past.

“There’s everything to play for. It’s to reach the semi final of a European competition, so it’s something we need to fight for and to work hard on.

“On Thursday we’ll have the support of the crowd. Today they gave us the support we need and Thursday will be the same.”

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