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Leagues: Scottish Premiership

Rangers lose Morelos for crucial Old Firm clash

Glasgow (AFP) – Rangers top scorer Alfredo Morelos has been ruled out for Sunday’s clash against Celtic with fears the Colombian could miss the rest of the season.

Morelos, who has scored 19 times for the Scottish champions this season, was sent home early from international duty due to a muscle problem.

He is now a major doubt for both legs of Rangers’ Europa League quarter-final against Braga and another meeting with Celtic in the Scottish Cup semi-finals on April 17.

“Alfredo unfortunately had a new injury while on duty with Colombia so he won’t be available for this Sunday and I think we will lose him for a longer time,” said Rangers boss Giovanni van Bronckhorst.

“We are assessing him the next few days but he’s out for Sunday.”

Rangers trail Celtic by three points at the top of the Scottish Premiership thanks to a 3-0 win for Ange Postecoglou’s side when the teams last met in February.

The Hoops also have a superior goal difference and will have home advantage in the final Old Firm derby of the season.

But Van Bronckhorst said Rangers have nothing to prove as they remain in contention for a treble of trophies.

“We don’t have to prove anything,” said the former Dutch international.

“It’s a couple of months since we lost the game and we picked ourselves up afterwards and we’re still in contention for three prizes at the end of the season.

“My team is excited, prepared and ready for the game. We don’t need to look forward or back, we just need to make sure on Sunday we’re the winners.”

In contrast to Rangers’ injury woes, Celtic were handed a boost with the news Kyogo Furuhashi is fit to make his comeback.

The Japanese international has not featured since the recurrence of a hamstring injury on December 26.

Furuhashi scored 16 goals in his 26 appearances for the club so far, including a double which won the League Cup in December.

“He is a very good player and he had a fantastic first half of the season,” said Postecoglou.

“We were disappointed for him that the injury came along and kept him out for quite a while.

“But we know the kind of impact he can have, he has already had a massive impact on our season and once he’s up and ready and out there again, I’m sure he will be looking to make a similar impact.”

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