Portugal fashion

Rangers striker Fashion Sakala will be too risky

Rangers travel to Germany to take on RB Leipzig in the first leg of the Europa League semi-final on Thursday night.

Gers are running out of options in attack following the injury to Kemar Roofe, and Giovanni van Bronckhorst has a big decision to make.

Keith Jackson, columnist for The Daily Record, suggested that the initial use of Fashion Sakala would be too risky.

“One of them could be thrown in the deep end against Leipzig, assuming Van Bronckhorst has already seen enough Fashion Sakala to suspect the Zambian is not a natural fit there yet,” wrote Jackson for The Daily Record.

“Sakala led the line for Rangers at Braga but operating with his back to goal felt like hard work for a player who wants to lead opponents from wider areas.

“In fact, given how Sakala struggled to make any impact that night in Portugal, Van Bronckhorst may think it would just be too risky.

“But Sakala’s searing pace could be used better on the wing.”

Lack of options

It’s a huge opportunity for Sakala to show his class on the biggest stage.

The Zambian striker was very impressive against Motherwell in the Scottish Premiership clash this weekend.

With Roofe and Alfredo Morelos missing, Giovanni van Bronckhorst must find a way to counter the problem.

The Dutchman can still trust Sakala for this game after his impressive performance on Saturday but there is an element of risk attached to it.

Sakala was used against Braga in the first leg against Portugal and he was completely ineffective. His direct style of play as well as his searing pace are best utilized on the wings.

Van Bronckhorst could take a left from Pep Guardiola’s book as Manchester City are an expert operating with a traditional striker. The same can be said of Liverpool.

It shows that Rangers can still use someone – could be Joe Aribo or Ryan Kent or Scott Arfield – in the fake role and get the job done.

In other Rangers news, 25-year-old could now be considered surplus to requirements at Ibrox this season.

Michael Stewart backs Fashion Sakala to make a big impact on Rangers v RB Leipzig on BBC Sportscene
Ally McCoist shares Rangers concern ahead of RB Leipzig semi-final clash