Gerrard self isolating amid Rangers’ Covid outbreak
Self-isolating: Steven Gerrard (pic: SNS Group)
Rangers have suffered a major blow with the news that boss Steven Gerrard is self-isolating after a Covid outbreak at Ibrox.
Gerrard misses the second leg of the Europa League play-off against Alashkert in Armenia tomorrow, and is also set to miss the visit of Celtic in the league on Sunday.
The squad has also been decimated in the wake of positive coronavirus tests, with skipper James Tavernier, Allan McGregor, Jon McLaughlin, Calvin Bassey, Scott Wright and Ryan Kent all absent from today’s flight.
No. 2 Gary McAllister will take charge of the team as Rangers look to make it through to the group stages after winning the first leg 1-0 at Ibrox.
“All the presentations and messaging will remain the same, the manager will still speak to the players and of course we have Michael Beale here along with myself,” said the assistant boss, who will have third choice keeper Ross McCrorie making his first-team debut between the posts.
“We are in constant contact with Steven. We are the lucky ones that are here who can affect the game and we want to get the right result for the guys back in the UK.”
The club confirmed the positive tests in statement, although didn’t identified those affected.
“Rangers confirm that during our testing schedule, we have received positive Covid-19 tests,” it said.
“Those identified as positive are now in self isolation along with ‘close contacts’.
“We have followed best practice in our procedures and protocols. From the outset of the pandemic, Rangers has worked closely with the Scottish Government and Scottish football to ensure the health of our staff is protected at all times. We will continue to do so.”
The development could also provide Gerrard and his staff with a major selection problem for the league meeting with Celtic on Sunday, the first Old Firm clash of the season.