Giovanni van Bronckhorst congratulates Celtic on winning Scottish Premiership title as Rangers boss issues Europa League final squad update

The Dutchman provided an update on the fitness of Kemar Roofe and Ryan Jack ahead of their trip to Seville

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Rangers manager Giovanni van Bronckhorst has congratulated Celtic on being crowned Scottish Premiership champions and securing a lucrative spot in the Champions League group stages.

The Ibrox club had breezed into a comfortable lead at the top of the table during the first half of the campaign and seemingly looked on course to regain their top-flight crown.

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However, their Europa League exertions after the winter break began to effect their domestic form as Van Bronckhorst’s side suffered defeat at the hands of Celtic and were forced to settle for draws against Aberdeen, Ross County, Dundee United and Motherwell.

Rangers manager Giovanni van Bronckhorst during Rangers training at the Rangers Training Centre, on May 12, 2022, in Glasgow, Scotland. (Photo by Alan Harvey / SNS Group)

In contrast, Celtic were churning out victories as they overcame a six-point deficit at the turn of the year to reclaim the title on Wednesday night.

Van Bronckhorst issued his response to watching their city rivals wrestle back the trophy, insisting his players must be ready to battle even harder next season.

Speaking on Sky Sports, the Dutchman said: “I think the biggest difference is they have more points.

“We had good spells in the league and their winning streak has been long.

“That’s why they took over the first place and in the end, if you have so many points you deserve to be champions.

“We have to congratulate them and we make ourselves ready for the big week that comes ahead.

“We have to be ready and bounce back as we start from scratch. We have to fight to get another title.”

Van Bronckhorst addressed members of the press at a UEFA media day at the club’s training base on Thursday.

He confirmed that striker Kemar Roofe is rated touch and go to win his fitness battle for the Europa League final against Eintracht Frankfurt next week.

Rangers' Kemar Roofe is pulling out all stops to be fit for Seville. (Photo by Alan Harvey / SNS Group)

The Jamaican international, who has deputised up front in the absence of injured star man Alfredo Morelos in recent months, sat out of Wednesday night’s 4-1 victory over Ross County at Ibrox.

It marked the sixth match in a row that the 29-year-old has missed due to a knee injury.

Midfielder Ryan Jack was also left out of the matchday squad for the second successive game but the Scotland international is likely to be available for selection in Seville.

Issuing an update on his squad, Van Bronckhorst said: “It’s going to be a close call for Kemar, so we have to assess him day by day.

“I think Jack is ahead of him. Jack will be ready for next week but I still don’t know about Kemar.”