Steven Gerrard has warned Steve Clarke to take care of Glasgow Rangers’ Ryan Jack whilst the midfielder is away with Scotland on international duty.
The 28-year-old started each of the first seven Premiership matches of the season, but he was forced off after just 11 minutes of the the Gers’ clash against Dundee United, coming off with a calf injury. Since then, he has missed four matches, with him only returning to play 12 minutes against Galatasaray on Thursday night.
Despite that, though, he was included in the Tartan Army squad for their upcoming matches against Israel, Slovakia and Czech Republic. As a result, Gerrard has issued a warning to Clarke over how to used him. He said:
“It was great to have him back. He came on and worked his socks off. He put in a disciplined cameo for us. It was the sensible decision because he has only trained once or twice.
“Look, myself and Steve Clarke both know Ryan Jack, we both know his body, we know he needs support, we know he needs managing. But Jacko and Steve Clarke will decide when and how, if he represents Scotland.
“We are pleased when our players get called up, we are proud to see them going to represent their country. But the fact is that Jacko needs support and he needs to manage his body because he is capable of getting an injury if he’s not supported or looked after.
“But I’m sure everyone will use common sense with him moving forward.”
Given his recent issues, it is somewhat of a surprise that Clarke has decided to include the former Aberdeen man in his 30-man group. Of course, given there are three international matches during the break, that means that he has the luxury of selecting more players, and that may mean Jack will play a back-up role, but it is potentially dangerous for the player himself.
Should Jack have been left out of the Scotland squad?
As said previously, the £1.53m-valued man (as per Transfermarkt) is an important player for the Gers, and he provides defensive stability in front of the back four – it is no surprise that the two Premiership matches he has missed this term have seen the 54-time Scottish champions concede three goals after they had kept seven clean sheets in a row. Gerrard cannot prevent him from representing his country, but he will be hoping that Jack returns to the Gers fold with no further complications.
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