Scottish Premier League

Lennon hopeful over Ambrose

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Thu, 07 Feb 2013 20:00:00

Harry Redknapp says Loic Remy could make his return from injury when QPR visit Swansea this weekend.

There had been reports that the Frenchman faced up to two months on the sidelines after hurting his groin last Friday.

However, Rs boss Redknapp has rubbished those claims and says Remy will return at the Liberty Stadium providing he is satisfied the injury will not be aggravated.

"He's close to being fit for Saturday," Redknapp said. "He trained this morning, he's very close.

"But I don't want to rush him in case he breaks down."

Remy joined Rangers from Marseille last month in an ?8million deal and scored on his debut against West Ham.

Meanwhile, QPR chief executive Phil Beard admitted that relegation from the Premier League could hinder the club's hopes of building a new stadium.

"Premier League stability is important," said Beard. "We share a training ground that isn't right. We will build a new one.

"A new stadium is a long term goal. We have great fans but we need to grow that fan base to fill it.

"It is going to be a minimum of four of five years before we have a new stadium."

Redknapp added: "You only fill stadiums if you are in the Premier League."

Rangers will "vigorously defend" any claim from finance firm Orlit after confirming they have been in dispute with the company.

The Glasgow club released a brief statement on Wednesday night saying they had agreed a deal with Orlit over an "insignificant" debt, after reports claimed the firm would seek a winding-up petition over a ?400,000 bill.

Rangers repeated their claim that a deal had been agreed, but not completed, although they added they were still being "harassed".

The club said: "Rangers have been disputing a payment to a foreign company, Orlit, although it should be stressed we have never said there is no bill to be met.

"What we have said and what we are telling our supporters is that not all of the invoices submitted with regard to this bill are legitimate.

"Clearly there has been a lack of understanding within the media about this when all we have done is refuse to be forced into paying sums we do not owe. It's as simple as that."

Rangers again insisted that there was no threat to the club and added: "If Orlit wish to instruct their lawyers to go to court then we will defend our position vigorously.

"We are absolutely convinced we'd win but we did think it would be better to avoid giving our many detractors another bar with which to beat us over the head.

"That's why we made an offer to settle but we now find we are still being harassed."

Orlit have made no comment on the matter.

The statement was accompanied by a separate, near-1,200-word article, written by recently-appointed director of communications James Traynor, which hit out at media coverage of the club.

Ambrose and his Nigeria team-mates will face Burkina Faso on Sunday evening in the African Nations Cup final, placing a question mark over his availability for the first leg of the last-16 clash at Parkhead.

Lennon concedes the versatile defender is a doubt but will give him every opportunity ahead of Tuesday's European outing.

He told CelticTV: "Nigeria did fantastically well and Efe has played brilliantly in the game so I'm delighted for him in one way, but obviously very frustrated in another.

"The final is on Sunday and he probably won't get back until Monday evening, so he would be a doubt.

"We will get him into the squad and see how he is feeling."

Better news for Lennon is the likelihood that James Forrest and Fraser Forster will both be available for the visit of the Italian side.

Forrest has had a scan after returning to Celtic Park early from Scotland duty, having made his return from a hamstring injury against Raith Rovers last weekend.

Lennon said: "He's just having a wee problem with his hamstrings at the moment. He came off again on Sunday feeling a bit tight.

"He went away with Scotland and had a scan on Tuesday back in Glasgow.

"There was nothing on the first reading so we are hopeful he will be all right.

"He's going for a second one today just to confirm it.

"If that's the case, we'll maybe not have him for this weekend but he'll be in the squad for Juventus."

Forster should return against Inverness on Saturday after being sidelined with a neck injury, while striker Georgios Samaras (hamstring) and left-back Emilio Izaguirre (knee) are battling to recover from injury ahead of the Juventus game.

Lennon said: "Fraser should be all right for the weekend and, if he comes through that, then he'll be starting against Juventus.

"With Sammy, we're giving him every opportunity and we'll see how he is over the weekend. Emilio should be fit for the game."

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