Rangers receive Lyons' share of rest

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The Independent Football

Lyons have failed to get their weekend match postponed after trying to seek a level footing with their Champions League rivals, Rangers. The Scottish Premier League agreed this week to postpone Rangers' visit to Gretna tomorrow, three days before the crucial match with Lyons at Ibrox. Lyons have been told they must play their Ligue 1 fixture against Caen today.

"We only wanted to be on a level playing field with Rangers," their coach, Alain Perrin, said. "We approached the League and asked if there was any chance we could postpone our match with Caen. It's not something we did lightly because we like to fulfil our fixtures on time. We wanted a little gift from the French league but they said no."

Perrin's Rangers counterpart, Walter Smith, made the initial request to avoid suffering more injuries for the final group game after DaMarcus Beasley, Nacho Novo and Jean-Claude Darche-ville were struck down. Lyons must win to pip Rangers to a place in the last 16.

On the domestic front, Celtic will be without their goalkeeper, Artur Boruc, for the Premier League visit of St Mirren. The Poland international has undergone a minor knee operation and will be replaced by Mark Brown. The striker, Scott McDonald and midfielder, Scott Brown played with ankle and groin injuries respectively against Milan in midweek and missed training but the manager, Gordon Strachan, is hopeful both will be fit.

Hearts are worried about the fitness of the midfielder Laryea Kingston for Motherwell's visit. The Ghanaian is a doubt due to a twisted ankle sustained in training this week. But Michael Stewart is available after a one-match ban and Eggert Jonsson has shaken off an achilles injury.

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