Smith awaits Bougherra explanation
Rangers manager Walter Smith is still waiting for an explanation from Madjid Bougherra for his late return from international duty.
The defender was expected to report back to Murray Park on Friday after helping Algeria qualify for the FIFA World Cup™ but failed to show on time. It was the third time the Scottish champions have encountered the same problem with the highly-rated centre-half this season.
He returned late from international duty ahead of the goalless draw with Motherwell in September, before missing a game at St Johnstone a month later, claiming his possessions, including his passport, were stolen on that occasion.
"I'll probably speak to him today at some stage," said Smith, speaking ahead of tomorrow's Champions League game against Stuttgart.
"It's obviously a concern but it's happened and we just have to handle it. We'll just get on with it. We are not the first club it's happened to and we won't be the last. We've not selected the team yet and we will sit down and do that after training."
Bougherra's latest indiscretion could pave the way for 17-year-old Danny Wilson to make his second appearance in the competition. He impressed on his Champions League debut against Unirea Urziceni and Smith has no fears about keeping him in the team for the visit of Stuttgart.
"If he is called upon to play, he is ready to play," said the Rangers boss. "He played very well in the game in Romania, which is never an easy place to go for a young boy to make a European debut.
"He handled that extremely well so there is no reason why he should be fazed by the prospect of playing in another one at home. He has shown he can come in and play and that's the most important thing from our own point of view."