Rangers in fresh injury sweat ahead of Old Firm derby as Alfredo Morelos misses Colombia match with muscle problem
The 25-year-old is rated a doubt to feature for Reinaldo Rueda’s side against Venezuela next Wednesday
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Rangers striker Alfredo Morelos sat out of Colombia’s 3-0 World Cup qualifying victory against Bolivia on Thursday after suffering ‘muscular overload’ according to reports in his homeland.
The Light Blues talisman was pictured with an ice pack strapped to his upper leg after being substituted during Sunday’s 2-1 win over Dundee and was also taken off as a precaution in their Europa League match against Red Star in Belgrade after going down injured last week.
Those issues flared up again yesterday as he missed out on selection for Reinaldo Rueda’s side.
It remains unclear if the 25-year-old will be fit to face Venezuela next Wednesday but the setback will have concerned Rangers fans and manager Giovanni van Bronckhorst with their Old Firm showdown on the horizon.
Morelos failed to make the bench for games against Peru and Argentina on both occasions during his most recent trip to South America with the national team in January, which saw him miss out on Rangers’ 3-0 defeat to Celtic at Parkhead.
The last of his 15 caps came as a late substitute in the Copa America back in July, with the likes of ex-Manchester United frontman Radamel Falcao, Liverpool ace Luis Diaz and Atalanta star Duvan Zapata ahead of him in the pecking order for a starting berth.
Meanwhile, Rangers B keeper Lewis Budinauckas has joined Raith Rovers on an emergency seven-day loan following an injury to Jamie MacDonald.
The 19-year-old has represented Scotland Under-21s and has featured regularly for the Gers reserve side in the Lowland League this season.
Budinauckas now joins the Championship play-off hopefuls as a valuable back-up for their league match against second-placed Arbroath at Gayfield Park on Saturday.
A short club statement read: “Lewis is aged 19 and joined Rangers in July 2020 where he has been playing for Rangers ‘B’ team, including matches in the UEFA Youth League (versus the likes of Sevilla U19s & Athletic Madrid U19s) and in the SPFL Challenge Cup when the Colt teams were introduced to the competition.
“Lewis has also represented Scotland U21s v Turkey last September. We would like to extend our thanks to everyone at Rangers FC for their help in making this loan possible.”