Philippe Clement has stressed the importance of a strong mentality as Rangers prepare for another four big games before the winter break.
The fixtures keep coming thick and fast for the Ibrox men as they look to end the year on a high with a potential place at the top of the league on the line if they win their remaining fixtures of 2023.
A trip to Motherwell awaits on Christmas Eve before Ross County come to Ibrox three days later then it’s the small matter of Clement’s first Old Firm game when they make the trip across the city to Celtic Park on December 30.
Three wins from those games will guarantee top spot for Rangers, who will also have a game in hand, before they start 2024 with a trip to St Johnstone on January 2.
The Belgian, who remains undefeated after 15 games in charge, is looking for one more push from his squad before they finally get a break after the game in Perth.
Speaking to the media on Friday he said: “The players are coping well with a heavy schedule and preparing well for every match.
“It is crucial we keep the mentality strong, it stays crucial. We need to be consistent in the marathon of a league. We push every time for three points.
“It’s a big period, four games and a lot of games to win or to lose.
“Then we have training camp and I’m looking forward to training hard with the team, and sitting down and talking with the team.”
Rangers have had eight clean sheets in the manager’s first 15 games, that has seen him win 12 and draw three as well as book a place in the Europa League last-16 and lift the League Cup.
And he insists a strong defence will be the bedrock in which any title challenge is built on.
He said: “It is important we have a lot of clean sheets, with the way we are playing we are always creating chances.
“The players understand with our more offensive way of playing we also defend better as a team. The players are really determined to avoid any mistakes.
“It is crucial we keep a good structure, the players are really focused in every game and meeting to do the right things together.”
Clement also revealed the Kemar Roofe and John Lundstram will be missing after joining an extensive injury list for Rangers this season.
He said: To say how long, it’s difficult for the moment.
“It’s quite early after this game. You need to make a good analysis with scans and getting results and all those things.
“So I understand, I had also moments like that in my career. So at that moment you feel that the sky drops on your head. It is what it is, now it’s about looking for solutions.
“There are not a lot of options, we have to look at what is best for the team.
“Players playing out of position and giving everything. Our story is clear in every position and they know what to do with and without the ball in different positions.
“It is most disappointing for Kemar (Roofe) as he is doing everything possible to avoid injuries. We are looking closely into the details to find solutions for him.
“Injured players are always in our meetings, I want them involved and to see what we are doing well and what we need to improve on.
“It is important they remain part of our story. Everyone has the same importance, we are one family who win or lose together.”
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