Striker worry for Steven Gerrard ahead of Rangers’ St Johnstone clash

Striker worry for Steven Gerrard ahead of Rangers' St Johnstone clash

In this instance, Gerrard might turn to another player of Nigerian ancestry, the 17-year-old London-born Dapo Mebude, whose parentage also includes a tartan bloodline, hence his inclusion in the Scotland Under-19 squad for Sunday’s friendly against Azerbaijan in Murcia, from which he has been recalled.

“He’s [Mebude] got a huge future and huge potential,” Gerrard said. “He’s probably not ready to be thrown into the deep end just yet. There is no doubt about it, he will play for Rangers at some point.

“Jermain has had some tightness. He’s had a scan and there’s nothing major there. He’s missed a few days’ training and he’s been with the medical team. We’ll try and get him through today and if he does, he should be OK.

“We didn’t expect this situation with Jermain but he’s gone from playing almost no games to playing in matches with this type of intensity. We always felt he would have a niggle here and there and that he would perhaps have to miss a couple of days’ training.

“Lafferty felt some tightness the day before yesterday. It’s the same story with him. We hope he can come through it and we’ll take it from there.

“It’s probably more frustrating for Kyle because he has had to be patient. In his mind, he’d be telling himself he needed more games and more minutes on the pitch.

“We are confident both Jermain and Kyle will be available but it’s how we manage them over the 90 minutes that we’ll have to think about.”

If Gerrard wants to take comfort from the dictum that there’s always somebody worse off than yourself, he need only consider St Johnstone. The visit to Ibrox will be their fourth fixture against an Old Firm side in three weeks, having lost 2-0 to Celtic home and away in the league and then being battered 5-0 at Parkhead in last weekend’s William Hill Scottish Cup tie.

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