Injured McCulloch stays positive
Lee McCulloch hopes to be back in action before the end of the season and able to boost Rangers' title bid.
The Scottish champions fear the midfielder's campaign could be over as he prepares to go under the knife to cure a knee problem after it emerged he had been playing through the pain barrier for months.
"Fingers crossed I can get back before the end of the season," he said in the Evening Times. "It will all depend on how it goes next week, as the surgeon won't be able to put a timescale on it until he sees how the operation goes and the full extent of things."
He added: "It's a massive blow for me personally to be facing up to a spell on the sidelines at such a crucial time with so many huge matches in different competitions, but I am a positive person and I am in good hands.
"We'll wait and see, but I hope there is a chance I can return for the run-in to the season."
Fellow midfielder Steven Naismith admits Rangers face a difficult period as they attempt to remain in the hunt for a domestic treble, as well as preparing for this month's Europa League clashes with Sporting Lisbon.
He was sent off in Sunday's 2-2 fifth round Scottish Cup draw with Celtic at Ibrox for picking up two bookings, the second for simulation as he tried to win a penalty.
Naismith does not believe the Hoops have the advantage going into the March 2 replay, nor the SPL meeting at the same venue on February 20.
"Every Old Firm game is different," he said. "Since I've been at Rangers, the team that has been the so-called weaker team has gone on to win the games.
"They are great games to play in and we have this unique situation where we have seven to play in but that's the way it goes. It's a massive couple of weeks with the European games and so it's tough times but thankfully we have a few fresh faces who can help the cause."
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