Rotation not on Smith's mind

Published Add your comment

Rangers' Champions League opponents Bursaspor may be able to make mass changes to their team to ensure fresh legs for Wednesday's clash at Ibrox but Walter Smith admits he has no such luxury.

The Turkish champions were already at an advantage, as far as Smith was concerned, after playing their Super Lig game against Bucaspor on Friday night, while Rangers face a trip to Aberdeen on Sunday.

"In a domestic sense we always have to do well so we will pick the team that we think will help us go and win the game," he said. "We've got a small group of players and all the boys know they will get an opportunity to play when we feel it's best for them."

Bursaspor coach Ertugrul Saglam - no doubt still reeling from their 4-0 defeat to Valencia on matchday one - claimed he could change his entire team for last night's game from the side which faced Gaziantepspor in a match which was abandoned following crowd trouble.

In the end, he made seven changes for the 1-0 win that kept them top of the Super Lig, but Smith insists his compact squad means he has no option but to field his strongest side at Pittodrie and that means limited changes from previous SPL outings.

Asked if the European clash will affect his team selection for Sunday, the Rangers boss replied: "No, the thing that will influence the team selection more than anything else is the fact we've not done enough up there over the last few years.

"That will be the biggest influence. We have to make sure that we try to get the win there that we haven't been able to do."

Striker Kenny Miller's eight goals in five league games already this season means he is likely to be the first name on the team sheet for the trip to Aberdeen, but he is also the man Smith turns to in the European arena, whether opting for a lone frontman or two-man attack. That could mean little respite for the club's top goalscorer over the coming days, with an away game against Hearts also looming next weekend.

"That's just the way it is," said Smith. "He doesn't want to miss the games either. He was looking to play in the League Cup game the other night as well. If he's on the run of form that he's on in terms of scoring, he will want to keep that going.

"If strikers are scoring goals, they don't bother when the games come along or how they're feeling, they just go out on the pitch and look forward to it and he's in that kind of form at the moment."

Copyright (c) PA Sport 2009, All Rights Reserved.

Do YOU want to write for GiveMeSport? Get started today by signing-up and submitting an article HERE:

European News
League Cup
UEFA Champions League
Kenny Miller

Article Comments

Report author of article

Please let us know if you believe this article is in violation of our editorial policy, please only report articles for one of the following reasons.

Report author


This article has been written by a member of the GiveMeSport Writing Academy and does not represent the views of or SportsNewMedia. The views and opinions expressed are solely that of the author credited at the top of this article. and SportsNewMedia do not take any responsibility for the content of its contributors.

Want more content like this?

Like our GiveMeSport Facebook Page and you will get this directly to you.

Already Subscribed to Facebook, don't ask me again

Follow GiveMeSport on Twitter and you will get this directly to you.

Already Following, don't ask me again

Like our GiveMeSport Page and you will get this directly to you.

Already Subscribed to G+, don't ask me again