Rangers star Ianis Hagi is determined to play if Rangers reach the Europa League final, his father Gheorghe has said.
In late January, Giovanni van Bronckhorst said that Hagi would be out for the remainder of the season with a knee injury.
In his absence, Rangers have overcome Borussia Dortmund and Red Star Belgrade to reach the last eight in Europe, and on Thursday he’s set to watch from afar as the Gers travel to Braga for the first leg of their quarterfinal clash.
Win, and Van Bronckhorst’s side will meet RB Leizpig or Atalanta for a place in the final.
Rangers haven’t played in a European final since 2008, when they lost 2-0 to Zenit St Petersburg in Manchester.
Hagi is confident that Rangers are capable of making it to the Seville showpiece and says his son has expressed an intention to feature if they do so.
“If they got past Dortmund, they have the ability to play in the final,” he told Sport Arena, via Rangers News.
“Ianis told me that he will play the Final. There are still two strong teams, Barcelona and Lyon, who are on the other side.”
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Hagi, dubbed ‘magic’ by Van Bronckhorst’s predecessor Steven Gerrard, is a real asset for Rangers.
He started 15 of their first 21 Scottish Premiership matches, and three of their six UEL group stage fixtures, before he sustained his injury.
He was commendably averaging a goal or assist every 221 minutes (which equates to every 2.5 matches).
The concern, however, would inevitably be the risk of rushing Hagi back based on sentiment.
Come back too soon, and there’s a danger that he exacerbates the injury and is out for even longer than first forecast, potentially damaging the pre-season recovery over the summer.
That is a dilemma Van Bronckhorst may face if his side are able to beat Braga and cause an upset against Leipzig or Atalanta.
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