Rangers boss provides Borna Barisic update after defender forced to leave win

Rangers manager Giovanni van Bronckhorst eased concerns over Borna Barisic after the Croatian international left-back had to be substituted in the closing stages of the 2-0 win over St Johnstone at Ibrox.

By Stephen Halliday
Thursday, 16th December 2021, 1:00 pm

It initially appeared as if Barisic had suffered an injury as he left the field to be replaced by Nathan Patterson, the Scotland right-back filling in on the left as the Scottish champions closed out the victory which keeps them four points clear of Celtic at the top of the Premiership.

Rangers are relatively short of defensive options with Calvin Bassey, normally Barisic’s deputy at left-back, currently playing at centre half while both Filip Helander and Leon Balogun are sidelined by injury.

But van Bronckhorst has no worries over an extended absence for Barisic.

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Rangers manager Giovanni van Bronckhorst. Pic by PA.

“He’s okay,” said van Bronckhorst. “He was just not feeling well. He’s not injured.”

Van Bronckhorst was generally satisfied with his team’s performance which saw Alfredo Morelos make the breakthrough just before half-time with Ryan Kent adding the second goal five minutes into the second half.

“The way we started, the first 15, 20 minutes, we created so many chances to go 1-0 up,” he said. “After that, we didn’t create as much because they were defending really deep and it was difficult for us to find our spaces.

“The goal just before half-time really helped us to go into half-time and change a little bit our position on the pitch.

“The second half, we created the spaces we wanted and started it well.

“We scored a good goal, a very high speed goal. It was a good move from Morelos and Ryan was there to score. I need my forwards to be in the box when there is danger and they did really well.

“After that we controlled the game and tried to score more. In the end, we lost a little bit of control. We lost the ball in midfield which normally doesn’t happen. Those moments were maybe a couple, but overall I’m really pleased with the performance.

“We knew it was going to be hard today but in the end two goals and the three points we wanted.”

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