Can Rangers cope without these three key players at St Johnstone?
Photo by Josef Bollwein/SEPA.Media /Getty Images

Arfield, Goldson and McAuley all doubts - can Rangers cope without them?

During yesterday’s press conference, Gary McAllister confirmed what many Rangers fans feared.

Scott Arfield, Connor Goldson and Gareth McAuley are all doubts to face St Johnstone at the weekend.

Goldson picked up a booking and a few bruises at Easter Road. (Photo by Alan Rennie/Action Plus via Getty Images)

During the midweek match at Hibs, Arfield and McAuley were withdrawn at half-time and on the hour respectively, with apparent muscle strains.

Goldson managed to make it through the 90 minutes, but only just. He suffered a number of knocks in the latter stages of the game and according Gary McAllister, is still feeling the effects.

“We’ve got a couple of little niggles, Scott being one of them, alongside Connor…and I think Gareth McAuley is struggling as well”, explained the assistant manager.

Can Rangers cope in their absence?

Arfield offers a goal threat from midfield. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

While Arfield’s absence would be far from ideal, it isn’t disastrous. Ross McCrorie replaced him at half-time against Hibs and delivered what Steven Gerrard described as a “stunning” performance.

More problematic, would be missing both regular centre-backs. Joe Worrall got 30 minutes under his belt when replacing McAuley, but he has been shaky of late. Nikola Katic, hasn’t featured since early November.

It would be a big change, but not necessarily a fatal one for Rangers. Although he has been a regular of late, injury prevented McAuley from appearing until November. The Gers managed without him until then.

McAuley missed much of the early season with a calf injury. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Although careless at time, Worrall was part of a back four that kept a clean sheet against Villarreal. Additionally, Katic, while undercooked, still possesses real quality.

Therefore, in the instance that all three of these players miss out on Sunday, Rangers can still be confident of three points.

Like-for-like replacements are waiting in the wings, and the centre-backs in particular, will be looking to prove they can deliver an error-free performance.

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