Football: Amoruso's armband anxiety

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The Independent Online
LORENZO AMORUSO last night walked into more controversy after claiming that Colin Hendry's arrival has made it more difficult for him to be accepted as the Rangers captain.

The Italian defender has found himself under pressure recently with a series of mistakes on the field since being handed the Ibrox captaincy by the new coach, Dick Advocaat.

Amoruso's temperament for the job has also been called into question after he appeared to be involved in a dispute with his German team-mate, Jorg Albertz, following Rangers' 3-1 win at Kilmarnock on Saturday.

Amoruso, who missed all but a couple of months of last season with a succession of knee problems following his pounds 4m transfer from Fiorentina, said: "A foreigner, and on top of that an Italian, has become captain of Rangers, and Scottish people are struggling to accept that. Colin Hendry is a Scotland international and a local hero, and a lot of people want him to be the captain."

Amoruso is fully aware that Rangers will need strong hearts and minds if they are to sweep aside PAOK Salonika in tonight's Uefa Cup preliminary round second leg tie in Greece.

Rangers will be wary, particularly after Arsenal, the English league and cup double winners, were beaten there 1-0 in last season's competition. But the Ibrox side go into the match with the advantage of a 2-0 lead from the first leg.

The Kilmarnock manager, Bobby Williamson, admits he is hoping for a timely dose of travel sickness to affect his Czech opponents as he attempts to prolong his team's European dream. The Rugby Park side face a huge task to recover a 2-0 deficit against Sigma Olomouc in the second leg of their Uefa Cup qualifier.