Old Firm: 8 things new Rangers boss Pedro Caixinha learned at Parkhead

Old Firm: 8 things new Rangers boss Pedro Caixinha learned at Parkhead

After today’s pulsating Old Firm epic, Rangers earned their way to a well-deserved point in interim coach Graeme Murty’s final stand before returning to his conventional duties in charge of the U20s.

But watching from the Parkhead seats, his successor Pedro Caixinha was an interested spectator, assessing his charges in person before he takes his place in the Ibrox hotseat tomorrow, and there was a huge amount for the new man to ponder as he begins the monumental task of trying to reverse Rangers’ ailing fortunes of late.

With that said, Ibrox Noise gives you a few things our new manager would surely have learned about his squad from this epic encounter at Parkhead.


This Rangers unit has more heart than it showed under the last manager. For various reasons, the bread man lost the dressing room many many months ago, and his squad no longer believed in him. This afternoon, every blue shirt gave their all, regardless of quality, and that last-gasp equaliser was a truly earned point for a team who gave it to themselves, our fans, and a temporary coach who has received plaudits from all and sundry. If Caixinha can cultivate that heart, and keep it beating like it did today, Rangers could well find their fortunes in the ascendancy quicker than we feared.


Despite the morale-boosting result which stopped our old rivals going even further clear, it was surely evident to Caixinha that a great number of players are painfully below the standard even needed for second place. Jason Holt, James Tavernier, and especially Martyn Waghorn had mostly awful afternoons, as has been the case all this season. If Rangers are to keep this present momentum, players like these might just have to be sacrifices.


Rangers’ defence is much better when it is properly organised. Today we saw Celtic limited to very few gilt-edged chances, with a back four who worked like dogs and never dropped concentration for even a second. While Murty is not quite Capello, he still put together a system which suffocated Celtic’s normally potent wing attack, and restricted them to trying overhead lobs to get behind. It worked brilliantly, and now Caixinha knows, defence-wise, he might have better players than they have shown under previous abysmal management.


Lee Hodson is Rangers’ best right back since Alan Hutton. Better than Whittaker (hardly major competition otherwise, true) and easily the best since 2012. Surely our new manager will see he was Rangers’ outstanding performer and, in concert with his colleagues at the back, completely suffocated Scott Sinclair, limiting him to essentially nothing. He was a major cause of why Celtic were so impotent up front, and even Dembele had little joy.


Danny Wilson deserves a lot more credit than he has ever received – sure, he is not Mr Consistent and does make a few errors, but alongside Hill Rangers’ central defence was able to withstand even the most penetrative assaults, with Foderingham only being called into a few decent saves. His opposite number, Craig Gordon, did far more critical work. Wilson had a stellar afternoon.


Martyn Waghorn will never have the composure up front to be a great Rangers striker. He has few goals this season in the league for reasons we saw today – two absolute belting chances and his best effort to was hit low at the keeper twice. But he did keep plugging away and despite running out of gas well before 90 minutes still kept trying and you cannot ask for more.


Rangers still badly need a ‘Barry Ferguson’ or dare I say it ‘Scott Brown’ type creative enforcer from deep midfield to dominate. Emerson Hyndman simply is not that kind of player, and while he had a solid afternoon, he will never be able to impose himself like a ‘regista’. Instead he works hard, has nice touches, uses his vision well and rarely wastes a pass, but cannot really influence as much as Rangers probably need.


Barrie McKay does have off days. ‘nuff said.

Caixinha has much to ponder overnight and over the coming days. What will be his selection for the visit of Hamilton on Saturday – will he make rasping changes or try to stick with present momentum? And will the formation remain as far away as possible from 4-3-3?

Time will tell, but at least Rangers’ new boss probably feels like he has learned a lot and has something to work with today.

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  1. And as usual all the media can talk about it how bad Celtic were. They don't even mention about how we set up to give them a game, it was the same last week with the 6 against Hamilton where no one actually said well done to rangers, but good on our team. I've always said we had the players if they were set up right. Yeh there's a few I would love to see the back off but hopefully we won't be signing only midfielders come the summer 😂

  2. At last a bit of fight & grit. Its only one game but if they can show that sort of determination every week then maybe the new manager can get us motoring.

    Bye the way I've looked @ the penalty shout and I am 100% big Clint gets the ball but its still brilliant to hear the unwashed moan about everything under the sun.

  3. The first thing to say here is hats off to Graeme Murty who got his team selection and tactics here absolutely right compared to Warburton who got both so spectacularly wrong the last time we visited Celtic Park. Some of the current squad will never be good enough to fill the shirt but every single one of them gave their all for the cause today and that's all we can ask. My assessment of the players probably differs a little from yours –
    Foderingham – couple of good saves but slow to get down to Armstrong's shot for the first goal
    Hudson – snuffed out Sinclair nough said
    Hill – great shift and forever a hero with that late equalizer
    Wilson – reads the game well but has to cut out silly mistakes – poor control on two occasions nearly cost us dear
    Wallace – true leader today and really powered on in final 10mins as we looked for a goal
    Hyndman – quiet in midfield until unleashed to go forward with 10 mins to go – great composure to keep shot low and on target that led to equalizer
    Holt – ran his socks off in first half – felt sorry for him that his miskick cost us a goal
    Mckay – as poor a game as he's had
    Tavenier – genuinely thought he had an okay game apart from his woeful corners – tenacious to set up equalizer
    Miller – what a shift – always gives 100%
    Waghorn – a player that has really gone backwards this season for me – couldn't fault his effort today but lack's composure when it matters – not Rangers class
    Windass – we looked more solid in the middle when he came on
    Forrester – never sure what he gives us – poor control and rarely a team player
    O'Halloran – not sure he touched the ball – but sureky his days at Ibrox are numbered

  4. We did better I am happy with that but Pedro needs to get it right for Scottish cup tie so do not let us down you where there watching now it is your turn now let us see what you bring to the table.

  5. Great to see a bit of resilience and fight.

    I was against our management choice and the mess of the recruitment. Time to make amends- make murty first team coach or assistant. He's earned it.

    Give Clint a new contract on player/coach basis. He's earned it.

    Give Kenny Miller a new contract on player/coach basis. He's earned it.

    Give the new manager the money he needs. As fans we have earned it. Even though I think it's a huge mistake, as manager he has my backing whilst he hopefully makes me look foolish.

    King however needs to do one thing – do what he said he would and invest. This is his final chance. I fear that if we have a good run towards the end of season that he will use that as his excuse this time.

    Great result, but the gap was still there for all to see. Hard work and organization can only take us so far.

  6. Thought Rangers played well today and the change in defence made the difference Tavernier is not a defender
    Fodringham made a couple of great saves and we could have been 2 ahead if Waggy had put the ball in the back of the net.
    with a few changes hopefully the new manager can make a big difference before the end of the season

  7. I thought Tavernier played well and Wilson was awfuland can't understand the overblown praise of Hodson (although he played quite well today)! Need to strengthen up the middle.

  8. everybody put in a shift today and I would like to say thanks for graham murtys efforts over the past weeks hope rangers board don't let him go somewhere else as he has handeld a tricky situation well

  9. Cant agree with your assessment of Holt yes he did make the mistake that cost us the goal but he worked his socks off in midfield. Tav played well and doesn't deserve the criticism you have given him (today) where as Mckay was no where to be seen , definitely the worst player in the team NO HEART

  10. As I said in previous column all I cud ask for was more fight n organisation and to finish the game with a respectable score line , murty u exceeded my expectations playing the strongest right bck n pushing tav on payed dividends how warbs cudnt see that is beyond me it made us more solid in defence n more creative going forward with tav creating the chance for the goal. For me waggy is a gd player I fink he's just not match sharp I think he downed tools with warbs long ago n mayb he Jst stop putting his all in in training n that's how he's lost his fitness n sharpness but new man in n every player need to prove there worth fitness will improve. N not playing Halliday was a spot on decision he's been Getting caught on the ball a lot n causing needless goals n the tempo of this game cud have been to much, although holt had done the exact same today. All n all gd performance by the players n a very happy bear here that draw was like a win for me today, no chance the magicless hat would have got that result today, mayb if warbs had been manager of the 20s n Murty manager of first team all season things wud a been different. Thanks Graeme murty. 🔴⚪️🔵 WATP

  11. Clint Hill's interview after the game said it all, Graeme Murty has given the team organisation and structure. Ouch, what a damming indictment of Warburton.

  12. I'd like to see Graeme Murty offered the Director of Football position tomorrow. And Kenny and Clint given permanent roles so that in three years time or sooner we have ready made management/coaching/scouting/Director of Football alternatives if/when Caixinho leaves.These three guys can be Rangers leaders for years to come.
    Murty really is a sleeping giant. When we think of the diabolical mess Warburton left us with both on and off the park the wee man has been magnificent. he now knows the strengths of each player at Ibrox. From 12 to 38. We must do everything to keep him at Ibrox.The DOF would be a good start.

  13. Firstly I have to say it was a real pleasure to watch an overall standard of Rangers performance against that mob, the likes of which I was seriously starting to think was a thing of the past, Namely that the team were very well organised, each man knew exactly what his job was, kept their composure after going behind and showed a passion and energy throughout which is a mirror image of the " I'm a clever prick and don't have to listen to anybody" bollocks approach by what's his name (voluntary amnesia) and the vast majority of the praise for this turnaround is due to the undoubted hard work of Graham Murty and for that, like all blue noses, I thank and congratulate him, I am sure the guy learned a hell of a lot in the 4 or 5 week period in the hot seat, where he carried out his duties with dignity, respect, no bullshit and an obvious footballing intelligence, DK should super glue him to Ibrox as he is definitely one for the future.

    The lessons I took from today is that the manky mob are not 100 miles in front of Rangers as that dick on the tranny/BT or the second rate striker Co-commentator on sky today would have us all believe and in truth are a slightly better than average team at best and while there is no doubt that we are carrying a handful of players who in spite of passion and effort shown today are simply not good enough for Rangers, their is a clear blue light on the horizon and while I concede that I was initially against the appointment of our new manager I am more than content to give the guy every support going forward cause if we don't all put the effort in to complete the required journey together then the likelihood is we wont get their at all, but I have no fears on that score as we are all desperate to get back to where we belong as the No. 1 team in Scotland who can compete in Europe and don't constantly embarrass and humiliate a whole nation (or 2) every year the way Septic have in our absence. WATP

  14. I think there were a lot more positives than negatives played out in the 'dome' today. If Pedro had jetted in to see our last away game at ICT I think he would have booked his flight home right after the game!! Today he saw what is possible with honest endeavour, belief and a game plan, yes all elements need to click and today they did for the most part today.
    I don't for one minute buy into the crap that they had an off day…sorry they were never given the time and the freedom they get week in week out, St Mirren showed the way to play against them, as highlighted by Neil McCann prior to kick off, and Murty set his team up today to do the same which took a lot of bottle but also lots of graft from players to cover, close and chase, the things we have been crying out for most of the season and the things mostly missing all season.

    I was always, and I mean always, critical of Warbs and his total lack of understanding of a game and an opponent, and the lack of a Plan B. Good managers can adapt and move the jigsaw pieces around to get them to fit, Warbs failed miserably to buy players for the required roles, choosing instead buying players and playing them out of position and in a way they are not accustomed to, it just doesn't work like that and possession means jack shit if you don't win games.

    I hope Caixinho doesn't fall into that trap and believe players at our level can emulate Barca or Real, we simply cant and Graeme Murty proved one thing, not just today but last week also, that to get results sometimes all it takes is hard graft, organisation, commitment and belief in what your doing….the thing I believe Warbs could not get through to the players.
    Yes it was one game, it was a draw and not a win, I get that, but the fact we found a way to hang in the game when under the cosh and the manner and way we actually went looking for a goal was very pleasing, we wanted it and we worked hard to take something from a game we were written off in before the start.

    I am so happy we are discussing football again, we need to get back to being football fans, we have forgotten how to analyse and discuss games….hopefully this will now be the norm, but I do fear circumstances and events will dictate otherwise

    Good luck on your first day tomorrow Mr Caixinho, you have a tough job ahead of you but hopefully you can turn us round and give us something to smile about again.


  15. We still need two decent midfielder, two decent defenders and a world class stricker, we played well today and had fight. But it's one game 1 draw in 5 games, simply not good enough. We need 5 really good players, and hopefully Pedro has people in mind.

  16. So pleasantly surprised with the performance yesterday. Agree with all said here for the most part- Murty has been great and showed what can be done if you put players in a place you know you can get some work out of them. Yes, MacKay had an off day, but everyone does. Waghorn should have had 2. Miller again I thought was ineffectual. He just wanders all over the shop. Thought Hyndman had his least effective game; he's in his element further forward. Other than that, really good stuff. Hill and Wilson for the most part solid as. Hodson great- even Tavernier had a good game (with defensive duties relieved). I know Holt got pelters for the Celtic goal, but I thought he worked his arse off all game. We worked hard and deserved it. And it's true- we showed that Cellik are an above average team at best, not world-beaters. They simply don't have opposition.

    Onward and upward.

  17. I had previously said with Kiernan out of the team, we had a chance. The biggest tactical boost was to take Tav out of the defence also. That was probably the most stable Rangers team I've seen playing in a long time. Credit to Murty.

    Tav wasn't the worst player, he took 4 shellic players out with his pass to Hyndman which led to the equalizer. I have always felt Tav def has something, but needs guidance and a firm hand to get him more disciplined and focused. Hopefully Pedro can do this, for all the players.

    I'm sorry, I just don't accept McKay had an off day, you just can afford them when playing against the beggars. McKay should have been pumped up for that game and prove a threat, but he didn't turn up and that was disappointing considering the talent the lad has! It hard enough playing at the piggery with 11 players, let alone 10. He bottled it!

    The sign of a good manager is where he can improve ordinary players into much better ones. Pedro seems to talk a good game, I just hope he can produce his philosophy on the park and not underestimate the pace of our game.

    As for giving out contracts to the aged, we really need to move on and start getting younger, fitter and stronger players in the team. Miller and Hill have been really effective for us, but we want to be great again, and that means better players. Time will tell!

    • I agree Jimbo, we should be using our money to tie young Gilmour down to a contract and bringing in young hungry players like Cummings, instead of hanging on to the old timers.

  18. Brill result yesterday. Thought the whole team showed guts and didn't let septic play there game. Still think we need a fast cb a holing midfielder and a right winger. But in Pedro we trust hope he gets it right as all us bears have been through enough WATP God save the Queen and no surrender to the unwashed

  19. Yesterday showed we have fight and probably it was always there just needed the right manager to bring it out and as it has been proved Warburton was not that man,as for Pedro he seemingly believes in attacking football which is good and has anybody noticed that since we dropped Halliday we have improved as a fighting force I still honestly believe like our new Manager that we can win the cup and finish second time will tell lets look to a bright future.

  20. I have just returned from holiday and was ecstatic at the result even more so when the press did the usual Anti Gers slash about they should have had a Pen and how bad the rotten mob were !! They are overrated and can be beaten and will be beaten . I can see a good change coming I just hope we can get it steady off the park too more grief from the garbage that were running the show before King and Co. I honestly fancy us to win the Scottish Cup

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