Bruno Alves would have been better off staying at Rangers during international break

General views of Ibrox Stadium during the Rangers v St Johnstone - Scottish League Cup Quarter-Final at Ibrox Stadium on October 28, 2014 in Glasgow, Scotland.

The Glasgow Rangers centre-back did not play for his country despite being called up.

Ricardo Quaresma (L) of Portugal is consoled by Bruno Alves (C) and Jose Fonte (R) of Portugal after being saved his side's second penalty in the penalty shootout during the FIFA...

Considering Bruno Alves has been capped 94 times for Portugal, it was no surprise when the Rangers centre-back was called up for his country this month.

But frustratingly for Gers manager Pedro Caixinha, the 34-year-old missed the clash with Andorra before being an unused substitute against Switzerland a few days later.

Bruno Alves of Portugal and Chris Wood of New Zealand battle for possession during the FIFA Confederations Cup Russia 2017 Group A match between New Zealand and Portugal at Saint...

In hindsight, Alves would have been far better off remaining in Scotland, as would a Rangers side who used the international break to run the rule over some of the club's next generation.

A selection of teenage defenders got a run out for Rangers in a specially arranged training ground friendly against Greenock Morton, and Alves's presence alongside them would have been a valuable learning experience for all concerned.

Instead the defender had a watching brief for his country, traveling despite a recent injury, and Rangers are now left with a potential selection headache for Friday's match against St Johnstone.

Rangers manager Pedro Caixinha is seen prior to the Betfred League Cup Quarter Final at Firhill Stadium on September 19, 2017 in Glasgow, Scotland.

Had Alves remained in Scotland for the last 10 days, Rangers' staff could have run the rule over him while the player himself could have got some much needed rest given his age and his contribution for the Gers thus far.

When you also consider how Rangers' teenage centre-backs could have benefited from some time with Alves, Portugal's decision to select him is frustrating to say the least.

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