Losing Russell Martin’s experience is a blow for Rangers ahead of Celtic clash

As reported by The Scottish Sun, Rangers defender Russell Martin is a major doubt for the visit of Celtic in the Scottish Premiership this Sunday.

What’s the story?

The upcoming derby is Rangers’ biggest match of the season by a distance and coming off the back of six wins in all competitions, there’s a confidence coming from Ibrox that hasn’t been seen for years.

However, it looks as if they’ll have to contend with an injury or two heading into the match, with defender Russell Martin struggling to make it.

That’s according to The Scottish Sun, who say that the 32-year-old was ruled out of training on Thursday with a back injury, instead receiving intensive physiotherapy treatment.

While still clinging on to some hope he could make the fixture, the paper say that Bruno Alves is set to start in his absence.

How big a miss will he be?

Martin has brought experience and quality to Rangers’ defensive line at a key stage of the season and his loan signing from Norwich City has been a definite success so far.

Graeme Murty’s side have lost just once in the matches he has played and alongside David Bates has built an effective partnership for Scottish Premiership level.

Bruno Alves is still getting back to full match fitness after a significant period out and supporters definitely have their doubts about the decorated Portuguese star.

David Bates coped well at Celtic Park in the last match between the two sides so, alongside Alves, Rangers might not miss Martin too much, but Murty would undoubtedly have preferred the Scotland international to be available.