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Page last updated at 17:54 GMT, Thursday, 17 December 2009

Bougherra allowed to face Hibs

Rangers defender Madjid Bougherra
Bougherra is still likely to miss the Old Firm derby on 3 January

Algeria have given Madjid Bougherra permission to play against Hibernian, but the Rangers defender is still likely to miss the next Old Firm derby.

His national squad is due to assemble in France on 27 December - the day of the game at Easter Road - as they prepare for the African Cup of Nations.

"He'll be free to turn out in Edinburgh after all," said Rangers' website.

"But it remains unlikely he'll face Dundee United or Celtic on 30 December and 3 January."

Fifa rules allow international sides to summon players from their clubs 14 days before major tournaments, but Celtic midfielder Landry N'Guemo has been given permission by Cameroon to face title rivals Rangers.

I have done my best to get permission for more matches

Rangers and Algeria defender Madjid Bougherra

However, Rangers manager Walter Smith said last week that the large number of players from British clubs in the Algeria squad might make it more difficult to receive special dispensation for Bougherra.

The player himself, who was criticised by Smith for recent late returns from international duty, is pleased that he will now miss at least one less game for the Scottish Premier League leaders.

"I want to play as many games as possible for Rangers before the African Cup of Nations," said Bougherra.

"I have done my best to get permission for more matches, but there are rules saying I need to report to the Algeria squad.

"I have at least been given authorisation to play against Hibs and I am very pleased about that.

"It is an away match, which will be very difficult. In many ways, it is like a derby, so I am happy I'm gong to be available for it."

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see also
Bougherra call-up concerns Smith
11 Dec 09 |  Rangers
Smith says Bougherra back in fold
27 Nov 09 |  Rangers
Aberdeen 1-0 Rangers
28 Nov 09 |  Scottish Premier
Bougherra unlikely for Euro trip
31 Oct 09 |  Rangers
Smith seeks Bougherra explanation
17 Oct 09 |  Rangers

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