Rangers tries to bounce back from tough week

Rangers hopes of defending its Scottish Premier League title were dealt a massive blow this past week as the club entered administration amid growing financial woes.

Ally McCoist's team ended last weekend four points back of league-leaders Celtic, but gets set to face Kilmarnock at Ibrox this weekend facing a 14- point gap between themselves and the Hoops.

By entering administration the club faced an automatic 10-point deduction, which now makes any hope of retaining the title a long shot at best.

But despite the blow suffered by the club, McCoist has been encouraged by the way his players have handled the situation.

"I've got to tell you the players have been fantastic," McCoist said. "They know the situation and they know the seriousness of the situation involving the club and involving the staff at the club.

"The best way I can put it is that everyone is rallying round. In training the spirit is incredibly high considering what has gone on."

Rangers has claimed 13 of a possible 15 points from its past five games, but it's hard to imagine Celtic throwing away such a significant lead, especially with the Hoops riding a 14-game winning streak in league play.

Kilmarnock has gone winless in its last four games but can potentially move into the top half of the league with a win.

Celtic will try to extend its winning streak on Sunday when the club visits second-from-the-bottom Hibernian, which has lost three of its last five games.

Third-place Motherwell suddenly finds itself within nine points of Rangers with a game in hand and will host fourth-place Hearts on Saturday with the two sides separated by six points.

Dunfermline sits on the bottom of the league, one point back of Hibs, and searches for its first win in five games on Saturday against Inverness, Dundee United plays host to St Mirren at Tannadice Park and Aberdeen aims to extend its unbeaten streak to seven games on Sunday when the Dons entertain St Johnstone.