Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 23 October 2014

Northern Ireland's Andy Little is facing long lay-off, says Rangers boss Ally McCoist

GLASGOW, SCOTLAND - NOVEMBER 6: Andy Little of Rangers suffers a facial injury and has to be carried from the pitch on a stretcher during the Scottish League One match between Rangers and Dunfermline at Ibrox Stadium on November 6, 2013 in Glasgow, Scotland. (Photo by Mark Runnacles/Getty Images)
Hitting the target: Lee McCulloch finds the back of the Dunfermline net at Ibrox in League One battle

Rangers manager Ally McCoist fears Andy Little could be sidelined for months after suffering a suspected fractured cheekbone.

The Northern Ireland international left the pitch on a stretcher and wearing a neck brace following a clash of heads during last night's 3-1 win over Dunfermline at Ibrox.

The forward was taken to hospital, believed to be the nearby Southern General, where scans will reveal the full extent of the injury.

McCoist said: "He doesn't look good. I'm going up to the hospital to see him.

"I spoke to the doc, and it's guess work because he's not been X-rayed yet, but it looks a really bad one in terms of a compressed or depressed fracture of the cheekbone.

"That's what it looked like. It was a really sore one."

Asked about the potential timescale if Little has suffered a fracture, McCoist added: "It would be months. I don't know because I don't know the severity of it."

McCoist is also sweating over the fitness of defender Richard Foster, who limped out of the action with an ankle injury.

The Light Blues boss said: "I'm not sure the chap who did that particular tackle was even spoken to.

"Foster has got a bad one. He is in there on crutches.

"We will have to re-assess it tomorrow and he will probably need an X-ray.

"I'm hopeful it's not as bad as it looks at the moment.

"It was perhaps another incident where the referee could have taken more severe action."

In what proved to be a bruising encounter, Lee McCulloch was also forced out of the match for a 15-minute spell to receive stitches in a head wound.

McCoist said: "He got six stitches which took a whole lot longer than I was hoping for to be honest with you.

"But the skipper is the skipper and his main objective was to get back on the park.

"Thankfully he did and led us to another great victory and converted the penalty with aplomb."

McCulloch opened the scoring from the spot with 20 minutes to go, with Jordan Moore – who McCoist felt was lucky to escape a red card for the earlier challenge on the captain – dismissed for conceding the foul in the box.

Jon Daly then doubled the advantage and Josh Falkingham pulled a goal back for the Pars, before Bilel Mohsni sealed a 3-1 win in injury time.

McCoist said: "We deserved the victory. We scored two very good goals and a penalty. We were a bit sloppy at the goal we lost.

"The second half was better than the first half and thankfully we took our chances."

Dunfermline boss Jim Jefferies was unhappy with the penalty award and the red card.

He said: "I don't think they broke us down at all until they got the penalty, which was a very soft award.

"A young boy of 20-years-old throwing Lee McCulloch about? I don't believe it. It was a blow for us. But I'm proud of every one of them. They gave a great account of themselves."

The victory moves the Gers 14 points clear at the top of Scottish League One.

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