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Boogie - I’m fearing the worst about my final injury

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I’m fearing the worst about my final injury

From GARETH LAW at Hampden

Published: 21 Mar 2011

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HIS face was tripping him and he sighed as he spoke.

Madjid Bougherra didn't look like someone who had just won the first silverware of the season for Rangers.

The elation of Co-op Cup victory - and dishing out some payback to Celtic after their last controversial Scottish Cup loss - was tinged by the throbbing pain in his hamstring.

With the scores locked at 1-1 the stopper had crumpled to the turf, been treated by the club doc, then hobbled back on to the pitch.

However, with eight minutes of normal time to go Bougy was forced to give in and come off.

He might have been the first back on to the park at the end of extra-time, wrapped in an Algerian flag to celebrate in front of the fans.

In the back of his mind was the nagging feeling he might have to watch from the sidelines in the coming weeks.

Bougherra should be lining up in a powderkeg African showdown for his country against Morocco this weekend. Instead he's expecting to be getting treatment.

He said: "It's good because we go into the international break with a lot of confidence.

"The only thing is I have a hamstring injury and I am afraid because I have a big international game.

"I have to see what happens. I am going to Algiers for a scan. I fly out on Monday and will get the scan Tuesday or Wednesday.

"I'm happy we have won the cup but I have this very big game against Morocco now.

"It's the second time I've gone away on international duty and got hurt just before.

"I just hope I can play for Algeria. Thinking of the Morocco game, there is too much pressure.

"It is a really big country and all the fans are now counting on us because we lost in South Africa.

"Morocco is like a derby and we are also at home."

Bougherra was sent off as Gers lost the plot to crash out of the Scottish Cup to the Hoops. It meant victory yesterday tasted sweeter for him than most.

He said: "This one was special because it brings us the first trophy of the season.

"When you play you want to win for yourself and the fans. The last derby was very disappointing with the red cards and the result.

"This match was like revenge. We wanted to win to show we are good enough to win trophies."

Few people had given Gers a prayer before kick-off, yet after overturning the odds to win they now turn their attention to chasing down Celtic in the SPL.

Neil Lennon's side are two points ahead but the Ibrox men have a vital game in hand.


Bougherra admits their Hampden success will prove key in the final 11 games of the season as they look to give Walter Smith the second trophy of his swansong season as Rangers boss.

He said: "It's a good one for us mentally and also for the rest of the campaign. Now we have to look towards the SPL title so that is a good thing for us.

"It was the last final for the gaffer and we wanted to win this trophy for him because he deserves to go with something good. We are all happy for him.

"We started extremely well and for the entire game we had a good mentality. We knew something could happen and we were confident. We are professionals. We know what we can do. We don't listen to critics.

"People try to knock us off our stride but we have so many games to play and we can only take them one at a time."

Meanwhile, Steven Whittaker admits he was preparing to become a spot-kick hero - but finished as a defensive rock.

Whittaker would have been the man on penalty duties had ref Craig Thomson not changed his mind after Nikica Jelavic crashed to the deck under Thomas Rogne's challenge.

He finished the game as a stand-in centre-half after Bougherra's injury.

Whittaker said: "It was tough and with Madjid going off we got a bit disjointed for five minutes.

"Once we settled into our positions we kicked on again. We deserved to win it.

"I thought the penalty was given and I was running up to take it.

"As I got up there I could see the referee wasn't giving it and instead was booking Jelavic. We have to accept that. Thomson didn't explain why he'd changed his mind. I was just running to get back into position when I saw he had. People will maybe put us down from time to time but it doesn't hamper us. We know what we're capable of.

"We've shown over the past three seasons since Walter has come back that we can win trophies - and we've done it again."

Gers now get a chance to regroup during the international break and Whittaker insists they'll return poised to add the SPL title to their cup success.

He added: "The break will give us an opportunity to patch up the boys who have been out, let us settle down and go on from here.

"We've always believed. People can put us down but as a club and a changing room this group will never stop believing. We believe we can be successful again this year."

Read more: http://www.thescottishsun.co.uk/scotsol/homepage/sport/spl/3480093/Im-fearing-the-worst-about-my-final-injury.html#ixzz1HBdR2fYD

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It's where he feels at home the most so he'll go back anytime he can get away with it. Plus there's the thing of being part of the national set-up being a great honour in most North African countries. Never refuse an invitation to the squad and all that. He won't play I don't think but he'll really want to be there.

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Cracking comment from Whittaker.

"We've always believed. People can put us down but as a club and a changing room this group will never stop believing."

Just shows what a legacy that Marvin Andrews left us !!

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Don't care, just as long as he is fit for Dundee United and the title run in.

Didn't see anything wrong with Bougherra, he was celebrating like everyone!

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