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Sport Michael Stewart raises Rangers fears as he warns 'weakest bench' could spell Celtic woe

12:10  19 january  2022
12:10  19 january  2022 Source:   dailyrecord.co.uk

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Pundit Michael Stewart believes the depth of the Rangers squad could prove a huge issue as they head into their showdown with Celtic.

The gap at the top of the Premiership is down to four points after Gio van Bronckhorst's side could only draw at Aberdeen on Tuesday night, their city rivals having beaten Hibs the night before.

Rangers travel to Parkhead on January 2 for the rearranged derby, with the game pushed back to accommodate the winter break.

And while Stewart believes there's little to choose between the two sides in terms of their first XI, he believes Celtic's January business could be the difference.

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He said on BBC Sportsound: "From Rangers ' perspective, they've been on a tough run of fixtures since van Bronckhorst has come in.

Michael Stewart has raised concerns over the January business at Celtic Park © SNS Group Michael Stewart has raised concerns over the January business at Celtic Park

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"Obviously just before he took over - or should he have gone into the changing room or not? - that semi-final against Hibs.

"Then this run of the season they had Aberdeen, Hearts, Hibs and Celtic to come - all away from home.

"They won at Easter Road, they won at Tynecastle, they've come away with a poor performance at Pittodrie but they're still unbeaten. So Rangers are in a good position, there's no doubt about it.

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"But I said this before the game and it wasn't about the starting XI: that's the weakest bench Rangers have had in a long time.

"You look at the starting XI, it was ok. It was a good team there's no doubt about it, but not nearly as strong as Rangers have been in the past.

"A lot was made last night about the additions that Celtic have brought in, the players that they've got back from injury as well. So the game at Celtic Park in a couple of weeks is going to be very, very interesting because what team is put out is going to have a huge bearing on it.

"If the two teams put out their strongest XIs then it'll be very difficult to choose between them, but you can start to see there if you pick out a few of those important players from the Rangers team it's clearly had a big impact on that performance tonight."

Rangers transfers: Six Ianis Hagi replacement options for Giovanni van Bronckhorst .
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