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Extended international duty set to rule out Roofe for Hearts start on Saturday

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Image for Extended international duty set to rule out Roofe for Hearts start on Saturday

Rangers key man Kemar Roofe looks set to have to settle for a place on the bench on Saturday at best, as the champions host Hearts at Ibrox.

With the end of the international window in sight for most and the European qualifiers in particular, the majority of Gers players on duty for their country should be able to return to Glasgow by tomorrow evening.

However in the case of Roofe and his commitments with Jamaica, he will be involved in a CONCACAF World Cup qualifier in Honduras to be played in the early hours of Thursday morning (UK time).

Realistically, by the time he is able to cross the Atlantic and then head back up to Scotland it will be late into Thursday evening, at the earliest, possibly even early on Friday morning.

Not great preparation at all from Rangers perspective, but just something that has to be dealt with in a similar way to the timescales with Alfredo Morelos playing for Colombia.

Due to this situation, it is very unlikely that the former Leeds and Anderlecht man will start the game against second place Hearts, but he could play an important cameo – in the same way that he did last time out against Hibs.

With his fitness and condition due to be monitored, Gerrard and Rangers staff will be mindful of the demands of travelling and ‘load’ placed on his body and wary of his previous injury record.

Prospects

In terms of Roofe’s involvement with the Reggae Boyz, he hasn’t yet made the desired impact although there are several players new to Theodore Whitmore’s squad which will take time to settle.

Roofe is yet to savour victory in a Jamaica shirt following their most recent outing – a 0-0 draw with Canada, a few days ago in Kingston, which the Rangers man started, coming after a 0-2 reverse to the USA in Texas.

It was his second start in his his third outing for the Caribbean nation who have had a disappointing run in this World Cup qualification campaign.

Jamaica currently sit rooted to the bottom of the CONCACAF table with their aspirations of appearing at Qatar next year needing a severe boost.

Realistically, they will need a sharp turn around in form to have any chance of progression with the top three qualifying automatically and the fourth placed nation facing a qualifier.

Without a victory in their last five games, including two draws, the Jamaicans have eight remaining matches to change their course, beginning with the away tie in Honduras on Thursday.

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