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MURPHY BLOW FOR MURTY

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RANGERS caretaker boss Graeme Murty has admitted Jamie Murphy is doubtful for Celtic’s visit to Ibrox a week on Sunday.

The on-loan Brighton winger limped off in the 4-1 victory over St Johnstone in Perth last night after sustaining a foot injury following a challenge from Matty Willock.

And Murphy is now a concern ahead of Sunday’s home Scottish Cup quarter-final tie against Falkirk followed by the meeting with Brendan Rodgers’ men.

Murty also confirmed Declan John is also struggling with a groin strain.

The Ibrox side moved to within just six points of Premiership leaders Celtic with their thumping of Tommy Wright’s team at McDiarmid Park.

James Tavernier set them on their way with a penalty before Josh Windass and Sean Goss netted before the break.

Alfredo Morelos claimed his 17th of the season early in the second-half with Jason Kerr’s first Saints goal nothing more than a consolation.

Murty said: “Once we assess the state of the squad and a couple of knocks we picked up, I would say, overall, it has been a good evening.

“There are a few knocks, a few sore ones. There are a few people with bruised and battered bodies because we have gone through quite a testing schedule.

“Jamie was the most obvious one. But we will just assess those, particularly Jamie, and try to get them rested down as soon as possible because we have got big games coming up.

“Jamie was in a bit of pain and he was a bit frustrated and a bit angry with some of the tackles that he had.

“But when you are an influential player and you hold onto the ball as he does, people are going to want to be robust and stop you playing.

“It is part of the game. We have to assess his foot and then we will go from there.

“I don’t want to jinx anything by saying how bad it might be. We try and be calm about it and we will make sure that he will get the requisite care.

“And it’s the same for Declan John who felt discomfort in his groin on Monday, so it’s too soon to give you any detailed information.

“There was no point in risking him with so many big games coming up. We’ll get him assessed and make sure with the rest of the group that he’s ready and in a fit state to go.”

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Acclaimed author Alex Gordon wrote the biography of Scotland international legend Denis Law, entitled 'King and Country'. He is a former columnist with World Soccer magazine and Scottish correspondent of respected European journal L'Equipe.

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