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Aaron Tshibola insists fearless play serves Kilmarnock well against Rangers

Kilmarnock v Dundee United – Scottish Premiership – Rugby Park
(Image credit: Jeff Holmes)

Kilmarnock midfielder Aaron Tshibola feels playing without fear has been key to their impressive recent record against Rangers.

And the former Aston Villa and Reading midfielder will adopt the same approach when Steven Gerrard’s Scottish Premiership leaders visit Rugby Park on Sunday.

Unbeaten Rangers extended their winning run to eight games on Thursday by beating Lech Poznan to make it 15 victories and 14 clean sheets from 17 games this season.

However, Killie have enjoyed success against the Ibrox side in recent years, claiming five wins and six draws in the past four seasons.

And Tshibola put that record down to the “no-fear factor”.

“We have gone into these games with no fear,” he said. “We are aware of the qualities they possess but it’s never frightened us.

“We know what we can do, the areas where we can hurt them, and everybody knows it’s never easy to come to Rugby Park.

“You can’t fear playing against these sides. They are just the same as us, human beings. There is nothing to fear.

“We will go out with the same mentality, knowing that we can match them in areas of the field and go in with that belief. If you go in with belief, then anything is possible.”

The 25-year-old, who is in his third spell at Killie, added: “They are on form, they are obviously a great side, great squad, great players, but we don’t fear anybody in this league and we have shown over the years we have got results against these teams before.

“We will give it our best shot and these clubs never like coming to us, so it’s all to play for.

“We have done it before so why can’t we do it again? It’s just the belief factor really.

“As a team we believe we can beat anyone in this league on our day.

“It’s about who’s on it on the day and we will certainly be up for it and we will certainly be giving it 100 per cent.”

Killie will be without Clevid Dikamona after the defender saw his leg twist underneath him as he landed awkwardly during last weekend’s home defeat by Hibernian.

But manager Alex Dyer has revealed the injury is not as bad as he first feared.

“He is OK,” Dyer said. “He is walking around now. The injury is not as bad as we thought it was.

“He is still going to be two or three weeks but we were thinking it was going to be longer than that. So that is good news for us. It’s ligament damage but not as bad as we first thought.”