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Rangers manager Giovanni van Bronckhorst hopes duo return after winter break

By December 14, 2021No Comments

Rangers manager Giovanni van Bronckhorst expects to have Kemar Roofe and Ryan Jack back to full fitness by the end of the winter break after both players suffered recent injury setbacks.

Striker Roofe picked up a knock on international duty with Jamaica last month and returned to the fold for matches against Hibernian and Lyon earlier this month. However, he missed Sunday’s win at Hearts and it has now emerged that he could be sidelined until next month.

Van Bronckhorst said: “Kemar has had a setback. Hopefully he will be fit before the winter break, but we are not sure yet. If not, he should definitely be back after the winter break.”

Midfielder Jack had returned to action last month following a nine-month lay-off with a calf problem. However, after making three substitute appearances, the former Aberdeen player felt discomfort in the build-up to last week’s Europa League match away to Lyon.

Van Bronckhorst, speaking ahead of Wednesday’s cinch Premiership match against St Johnstone, said: “Ryan is similar to Kemar. We hope to have him back as soon as possible. Hopefully he will be back fully fit when we start after the winter break.

“Before the game against Lyon, in the last training before the game, he had a moment again. He was disappointed but he felt it wasn’t as bad as he had before, so hopefully we get a quick recovery from him. I’m sure he will be with us training again in the next couple of weeks.”

Van Bronckhorst believes his club are equipped to have a fruitful January transfer window.

He said: “We have had a lot of meetings with (sporting director) Ross Wilson so we know what we want to do and in which areas we must be prepared in case something happens. In that way we are already preparing.

“It’s always good to have the squad you want at the end of the window. It’s never good if you have less of a squad at the end of the window than when you came into it. The objective for us is to have a quality squad at the end of the window.”

Van Bronckhorst is relishing February’s Europa League showdown with a Borussia Dortmund side featuring Gio Reyna, the son of his former Rangers colleague Claudio Reyna.

Reflecting on Monday’s draw for the first time, he said: “It’s very exciting for me and the club. It’s a good chance for us to play two good games against a quality opponent. It’s going to be really hard but you want challenges in life and in football. You want to compete against the best.

“Gio sent a text to my eldest son. They are almost the same age. It is good to be drawn against him. We visited him one and a half years ago to watch one of the Dortmund games and I have been in contact with his dad Claudio.

“We are good friends so hopefully he can come to the games as well. Being the professionals we are, we want to do the best for our clubs, but for me it is very special because I have known Gio his whole life and he is named after me.”