A significant Premiership rule change has provided a boost to Rangers ahead of their return to action.
On Thursday afternoon, the SPFL confirmed that there would be in an increase in the number of permitted substitutions per game in the Premiership for the second half of the season.
During the first half of the campaign, managers were only permitted to name seven substitutes and only three of them could be used.
From now on, though, managers can name nine substitutes and five of them can be used.
The change comes after 75% of Premiership clubs backed the rule change, which was also approved last season to help reduce the strain on squads amid a hectic schedule.
“FIFA has allowed each league to determine its own rules regarding substitutes since the Covid-19 pandemic began,” said an SPFL spokesman [SPFL.co.uk].
“As a members’ organisation, it is key that clubs in each division are able to make decisions on issues such as this for themselves.”
The names of the clubs who voted for and against weren’t revealed but it’s almost certain that Rangers backed the increase.
It was a topic Steven Gerrard spoke regularly about during his time in charge and although there’s since been a regime change at Ibrox, it can only be an advantage for Gio van Bronckhorst to have more options at his disposal during league matches.
Given that only Celtic have comparable squad depth in Scotland, the Gers are better placed to take advantage of the change than the majority of the teams they will come up against.
It’s also a boost for fringe players at Ibrox, as it increases their chances of making matchday squads and receiving playing time.