MARK WARBURTON is expecting to rotate his squad this week and confirmed yesterday that Kranjar could be in line to feature today from the bench.

The Gers travel to Motherwell to face Mark McGhee’s squad in the League Cup and he says that new signing Niko could feature from the bench, but that fellow new signing Joey Barton will likely feature on Tuesday against Annan at Ibrox.

He said: “It’s probably too early for Joey (Barton), but we might see Niko (Kranjcar) for a small period of the game.

“We’ll look to introduce both of them on Tuesday in a greater capacity but again for a limited time.

“We have to build it up and gear towards the start of the league. There’s no point in rushing players unnecessarily now because we have to make sure that they are ready.

“We need to make sure we look after each individual player. Matt Gilks is the same, Wes (Foderingham) will start tomorrow and then we will rotate on Tuesday.

“Right the way through the team we will make changes, we’d expect Lee Hodson to make a start on Tuesday too.

“Josh Windass will start on Tuesday again and we’ll look at that and see where we are as a squad.”

The Light Blues confirmed the squad numbers for the season yesterday with Joey Barton taking up the number eight shirt for the season. Whilst he isn’t expected to feature at Fir Park today, Mark Warburton says he is more than capable of taking up the mantle of a jersey made famous by the likes of Paul Gascoigne and Giovani van Bronkhorst.

He said: “I think that some players when they come in they look at the available numbers and it’s important.

“Some of the senior players earn their numbers and quite rightly. As long as the players are happy with them, whether they are 33, or 8 or whatever, it is what it is and each person differs.

“He’s not a bad player Joey (Barton), he has an impressive CV and had a tremendous year last year. It’s a big number for Rangers and I’m sure Joey has more than enough quality to fill that number.”

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