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Rangers handed Champions League boost

Glasgow Rangers have been handed a potential boost ahead of their return to Champions League action on Wednesday night.

What’s the talk?

Giovanni van Bronckhorst’s Light Blues host Liverpool at Ibrox as they look to avoid a fourth straight defeat in the group stages of the competition.

Their chances of picking up a result may have improved with the news that Trent Alexander-Arnold, Joel Matip and Luis Diaz will all be out injured.

The Athletic’s James Pearce has confirmed that the former two will both be out for a couple of weeks with their respective knocks, whilst the Colombian winger is set to be out until after the World Cup.

Huge boost

Liverpool losing those players for this game is a huge boost for van Bronckhorst and Rangers as they have all been key for Jurgen Klopp this season.

All three of them started in the 2-0 defeat for the Gers at Anfield and Alexander-Arnold scored one of the goals with a terrific free-kick past Allan McGregor, whilst Matip (7.3) and Diaz (7.2) both earned SofaScore ratings higher than any outfield player for the Light Blues.

The CIES Footballing Observatory values Alexander-Arnold at £79m (€90m), Diaz at £114m (€130m), and Matip at £17.5m (€20m), which means that the Reds will be missing a whopping £210.5m worth of talent.

This highlights the quality of the players Klopp will be without and their respective statistics in 2022/23 suggest that their absence will be a boost for Rangers.

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Gio van Bronckhorst coaching on the touchline for Rangers

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Diaz has scored three goals and provided two assists in seven Premier League starts, whilst he has also scored once in three Champions League outings. He is a goal threat from out wide and James Tavernier should be delighted to learn that he will not have to defend against him.

Alexander-Arnold, meanwhile, has created nine chances in three European games and is averaging 1.8 key passes per match in the English top flight. The England international has a wand of a right foot and is capable of regularly setting up his teammates for shooting opportunities, whilst his potential replacement Joe Gomez has created 0.4 chances per game in the Premier League.

Finally, Matip has averaged a SofaScore rating of 7.27 and won a whopping 79% of his individual duels in three Champions League outings for Liverpool this term. He has been a dominant defender in the competition and his potential replacement, Ibrahima Konate, has not started a single game in Europe all season.

Therefore, Liverpool’s team could be weakened by these injuries and that is why their respective absences should be a big boost for van Bronckhorst heading into Wednesday’s match.

Article title: Rangers handed Champions League boost

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