Glasgow Rangers legend Derek Johnstone 'wouldn't be surprised' to see Ibrox club arrange closed-door pre-season friendlies

Rangers manager Steven Gerrard applauds the fans during the Betfred Scottish League Cup Semi Final match between Aberdeen and Rangers at Hapden Park on October 28, 2018 in Glasgow,...

Glasgow Rangers have scheduled three pre-season friendlies at Ibrox this summer but Gers legend Johnstone believes there might be more.

Steven Gerrard, head coach of FC Rangers celebrates after the 2nd Leg football match between NK Maribor and Rangers FC in 3rd Qualifying Round of UEFA Europa League 2018

Glasgow Rangers legend Derek Johnstone has given his opinion on the Ibrox club's upcoming pre-season friendlies, as per his column in the Evening Times.

He has suggested that, given Gers' busy summer ahead of domestic and European football, there may be yet more fixtures arranged in order to get all the players up to speed.

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Earlier this week, Rangers confirmed that Ibrox will host three friendly matches in July against Oxford United, Olympique Marseille and Blackburn Rovers, on the Sundays of 7, 14 and 21 July respectively, the three fixtures kicking off at 3pm.

 

Steven Gerrard's side will be heading to Portugal for a nine-day training camp ahead of their pre-season fixture programme, which will also include Europa League qualifiers, as reported by the Daily Record.

"Steven needs to find out early on who has hit the ground running so that Rangers can progress through the rounds in Europe," Johnstone wrote in the Evening Times. "And, of course, they will need to start really well in the Premiership and show that they mean business in the title race next season.

Derek Johnstone former Rangers striker (L) and former St Mirren boss Gary Teale pose for a photograph during the Scottish League Cup Draw at Hampden Park on August 3, 2015 in Glasgow,...

"There may well be closed door games within the schedule as well once the team are back from their training camp this month. It is no use having some players only getting half an hour here or there. You need 90 minute games and I wouldn’t be surprised to see games being played at the Hummel Training Centre or other fixtures being lined up as well."

The first game of the Europa League second qualifying round will be held on Thursday 25 July, while the second leg of this round will be a week later, then the following two Thursdays will see the first and second legs of the third qualifying round.

The playoff round then begins on 22 August, the return leg will be a week later, and the draw for the Europa League group stage is a day later on Friday 30 August (The Scottish Sun) - so all in all, it could prove a very busy summer for Rangers.

Rangers manager Steven Gerrard applauds the fans during the Betfred Scottish League Cup Semi Final match between Aberdeen and Rangers at Hapden Park on October 28, 2018 in Glasgow,...

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