Rangers face Benfica in a massive Europa League Group D fixture at Ibrox on Thursday night.

The Gers come into the game with an impressive haul of seven points from their first three matches and know that if Standard Liege defeat Lech Poznan in the group’s other game, three more would be enough to book a place in the Round of 32.

Rangers v Lech Poznan: Group D - UEFA Europa League

Alfredo Morelos celebrates scoring against Standard Liege. (Photo by Robert Perry – Pool/Getty Images)

It’s going to be tough to beat Benfica, but Rangers have been almost flawless at home in European competition under Steven Gerrard and the visitors are set to be considerably understrength.

Darwin Nuñez, Julian Weigl and Adel Taarabt are all out after testing positive for Covid-19, while Jean-Clair Todibo, Nuno Tavares, Andre Almeida and Pedrinho are amongst those missing through injury [Daily Record].

Rangers have comparatively few availability issues with only Nikola Katic, Nathan Patterson and Bongani Zungu definitely out, while Ryan Jack is a doubt.

As a result, while a few alterations can be expected, Steven Gerrard won’t be forced into wholesale changes from the side that defeated Aberdeen 4-0 on Sunday.

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Allan McGregor is set to keep his place in goal and full-backs, James Tavernier and Borna Barisic, will continue. However, we’re expecting Filip Helander to come back in to partner Connor Goldson at the expense of Leon Balogun.

Benfica v Rangers: Group D - UEFA Europa League

Rangers centre-back Filip Helander struggled against Benfica in Lisbon but should come back in for this one. (Photo by Gualter Fatia/SNS Group via Getty Images)

In midfield, it’s unlikely that Ryan Jack will be risked if he isn’t 100% fit, so he may drop out of the side for Steven Davis.

 

Meanwhile, Joe Aribo could make way for Glen Kamara, with Scott Arfield completing a slightly more defensive-minded midfield three than the one deployed at the weekend.

It would be a surprise if there were changes made at the top end of the pitch, though.

Alfredo Morelos is ready to go [Rangers FC Twitter], while both Kemar Roofe and Ryan Kent scored on Sunday and should retain their spots.

Rangers Predicted XI vs Benfica (H) – 26/11/2020

 

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