Rangers strong enough for four-cornered challenge: Smith

Rangers strong enough for four-cornered challenge: Smith

( AFP ) - Rangers manager Walter Smith insists that despite a narrow 1-0 defeat over Hibernian in the Scottish Cup he has a strong enough squad to cope with the demands of competing in four tournaments.

The Glasgow side progressed to the last eight after edging Sunday's fifth round replay at Ibrox.

Rangers now face a tough trip to Germany on Thursday to take on Werder Bremen in the second leg of a last 16 UEFA Cup match before Sunday's Scottish League Cup final against Dundee United at Hampden.

And with a Scottish Cup quarter-final tie against Partick Thistle on Wednesday week the fixtures are coming thick and fast for Rangers, who sit four points clear of their Old Firm rivals Celtic at the top of the Scottish Premier League.

But Smith believes he has the players to help bring a trophy back to Ibrox for the first time since May 2005, when the club lifted the SPL title.

He said: "The only thing that concerns me about the number of games coming up is the situation with injuries.

"We've got Daniel Cousin with a fractured jaw and Lee McCulloch with a thigh strain. But Jean-Claude Darcheville should be back, if not for Thursday then Sunday.

"As I've kept saying I don't think it is fatigue or anything like that which is the problem. It is the injury situation.

"But hopefully we have a big enough squad to handle that. We have to keep the freshness throughout the squad.

"We have players coming back like Kevin Thomson, who has not played for five or six weeks, and we have to make sure they reach a level of match fitness.

"If we are saying on the one hand that we have a big squad of players and we constantly use roughly the same first eleven players then we are maybe going to hit a problem.

"So it is a difficult balance from a managerial point of view to try and achieve but I just have to continue and try and do it."

On Sunday Rangers were made to work hard for their place in the Scottish Cup quarter-finals.

Earlier in the day Old Firm rivals Celtic clinched a replay against Aberdeen with an injury time equaliser from Jan Vennegoor of Hesselink making it 1-1 at Pittodrie.

At Ibrox Rangers took the lead in the 40th minute with a super strike from winger Chris Burke after good work from Northern Ireland international Steven Davis.

Davis cut in from the left and drove his pass across the box to Burke who skipped past his marker to curl the ball into the top left hand corner of the goal.

Rangers should have increased their lead on the stroke of half time but Naismith's weak effort was easily saved.

Hibs started the second half positively and had the best of the early chances.

Former Rangers player Ian Murray saw his shot deflected wide in the 53rd minute and Fletcher headed just past the post.

The home fans were incensed when referee Craig Thomson waved away Nacho Novo's claims for a penalty in the 74th minute when his cross appeared to be handled by Chris Hogg.

But worse was to come for Novo, who had come on for Steven Naismith in the 67th minute, when he was shown a straight red card for a two-footed tackle on Cameroonian Thierry Gathuessi with 79 minutes on the clock.

Walter Smith too was ordered to the stand by Thomson after an altercation with the Hibs bench in the aftermath of Novo's ordering off.

Novo is likely to miss next Sunday's League Cup final against Dundee United through suspension following his dismissal.

However, despite a late rally Hibs failed to capitalise on their extra man advantage and Rangers hung on to clinch a place in the quarter-finals.

Turkmenistan increases tomato exports to EAEU
Turkmenistan increases tomato exports to EAEU
Russia is first to register COVID-19 vaccine worldwide
Russia is first to register COVID-19 vaccine worldwide
Uzbekistan, Russia expanding bilateral cooperation in agro-industrial sector
Uzbekistan, Russia expanding bilateral cooperation in agro-industrial sector
Loading Bars
Latest
Kazakhstan increases oil export, petroleum goods production
Volume of wheat purchased in Iran announced
Return of blocked deposits in closed banks in Azerbaijan to begin in few days
Azerbaijan's Constitutional Court decides in favor of citizens on deposits in closed banks
Sale of Iran's oil bonds to bring profit to buyers
Afghanistan’s activity at Turkmen State Commodity Exchange in July 2020
Кazakhstan Electricity Grid Operating Company to buy construction materials via tender
Demand of Azerbaijani banks at Central Bank's currency auction fully met
Iran to review possible withdrawal from nuclear deal before US elections
Kazakhstan’s freight transportation operator opens tender for equipment maintenance
Iran's oil bonds not profitable during foreign currency crisis
Iran uses domestic nanotechnology to paint coating of airplanes
Insurance sector’s premiums up in Georgia
New inflow of natural gas received at Turkmenistan's Tajibay field
Uzbekistan aims to boost production of cement, construction materials
Iranian economist: Selling oil bonds - win-win deal
Turkish president receives Azerbaijani Foreign, Defense Ministers
Azerbaijan confirms 214 more COVID-19 recoveries
Uzbekistan establishes joint Uzbek-German asphalt production enterprise
Turkmenistan exports large volume of vegetables, fruits to EAEU countries
Iran's Shazand Oil Refining Company reveals amount of fuel produced for ships
Kazakhstan's foreign exchange reserves up month-on-month
Georgian Products Renaissance company expands export of its products
Saudi arabian company to build gas turbine power station in Uzbekistan
Prices of precious metals change in Azerbaijan
Turkmenistan increases tomato exports to EAEU
Georgian citizens arriving in Finland not to undergo compulsory quarantine
Uzbek-Korean JV to buy industrial vacuum cleaners via tender
Kazakhstan's import of Austrian-made goods plummets during COVID-19
Turkey unveils 1H2020 volume of gasoil movement through its ports
Mevlut Cavusoglu: Turkey always next to fraternal Azerbaijan
Azerbaijan's PM holds phone talk with CEO of BP Group
Iran’s Bahar Azadi gold coin price continues to rise
Iran talks about details of dairy products export
Volume of gas injected into storages in Azerbaijan disclosed
Turkish Anadolu news agency publishes interview with Azerbaijani MP Sevil Mikayilova on Azerbaijani-Turkish relations
Russia is first to register COVID-19 vaccine worldwide
French privacy watchdog opens preliminary investigation into TikTok
Azerbaijani currency rates for August 11
Demand for coal in Uzbekistan increases
Georgian Partnership Fund to sell its shares in Telasi energy distributor company
Design of upper block for Azerbaijan's Karabakh field being developed
Home purchases in Israel at 10-year peak in June
Iran's Tehran Oil Refining Company to boost its production
South Korean company to build cement plant in Uzbekistan
Azerbaijani FM: Azerbaijani-Turkish relations successfully developing in all areas
Azerbaijani president: Interest of foreign investors in oil and gas industry, in Azerbaijan’s oil and gas potential showing no sign of abating
Azerbaijani president: Just as we are returning to once abandoned Garabagh field today, we will return to our native Karabakh land in same manner
Iran to save foreign currency via domestic production
Turkmenistan’s Balkan region to increase volume of agricultural production
Amount of MOL Group’s provisions at Azeri-Chirag-Gunashli disclosed
Uzbekistan, Russia expanding bilateral cooperation in agro-industrial sector
Jackets for Azerbaijani Absheron field ready - BOS Shelf
Azerbaijani president: Garabagh field jacket demonstrates our strength again
FM: 29 agreements to be signed between Azerbaijan, Turkey
President Ilham Aliyev: First gas and oil at Garabagh field should be produced in two years – at the end of 2022
Azerbaijani FM to meet with Turkish president
Bos Shelf: Sail away of jacket for Azerbaijani ACE project expected in late 2021
President Ilham Aliyev: All projects are being implemented successfully
President Ilham Aliyev: By doing all this work, we are redrawing an energy map of Eurasia
Azerbaijani president: Southern Gas Corridor is our historic achievement
Iran exports major part of non-oil products to neighboring countries
Azerbaijani president: Then leadership of Azerbaijan – the PFPA-Musavat tandem – allowed for occupation of our lands
Georgian Healthcare Group removed from London Stock Exchange
Iran building new solar panel station
Iran reports its COVID-19 data for August 11
MOL Group reveals capex in Azeri-Chirag-Gunashli
Uzbekistan discovers new gas field in country's Bukhara region
MOL Group increases filling stations in Europe
European Gymnastics President: 38th edition of FIG Congress to be held in Antalya
Azerbaijani oil grows in price
BOS Shelf completes construction of largest offshore jacket in Caspian Sea
New wells put into operation at Iran's South Pars gas field
Azerbaijani, Turkish FMs holding meeting in Ankara (PHOTO)
Central Bank of Azerbaijan launches IFC-funded digital financial service project
Georgia's Herbia company plans to expand its operations
Turkmen livestock complex boosts milk production
Deputy PM: Serbia supports territorial integrity of Azerbaijan
Iran reveals value of subsidies in energy sector
Equinor to retain leading role among oil majors in energy transition
Deputy PM: Serbia, Azerbaijan have strong friendly relations
Deputy PM: Serbia successfully cooperates with Azerbaijani companies
SOCAR, Equinor establishing new joint venture in Azerbaijan
Russia's coronavirus case tally nears 900,000
Turkmenistan's president sets tasks for agro sector of country's Akhal region
EBRD talks details of its support package to Kazakhstan's Big Almaty Ring Road project
Gas demand decline to be significantly softer than for oil demand
Azerbaijani state budget revenues on VAT slightly down
Georgia exports peaches, nectarines to EU countries for first time
Kazakhstan's entrepreneurship dev't fund places green bonds in co-op with UNDP
Much of demand loss for refined fuels due to COVID-19 to be temporary
Key foreign policy priorities of renewed Uzbekistan
UK says wants greater flexibility to return illegal migrants back to France
Azerbaijani high-rank officials hold meeting with Serbian Deputy PM (PHOTO)
Short-time work hits German wages in second quarter
UK suffers biggest job losses since 2009 as COVID hits
Turkmenistan, Qatar to strengthen co-op in number of sectors
UK's Heathrow Airport passenger numbers down 88% amid ongoing travel restrictions
Coronavirus infections stabilise in Australia's virus epicentre
LafargeHolcim and IBM join forces to further develop ORIS – the first digital materials platform for sustainable road solutions
All news