Tuesday, 1 August 2017

Simply the Best (Old Firm wins)

 Article by: Martin Green, for Ibrox Noise
Celtic’s unbeaten run currently stands at 46 league matches and it is difficult to see anybody putting a stop to it any time soon. After becoming Scotland’s first ever Invincibles and completing a domestic treble in 2016/17, Brendan Rodgers’ men will fancy their chances of extending their run well into the future. If anyone is going to stop them, it will probably have to be Rangers, who now have a full season back in the top flight under their belts and will see finishing second as the bare minimum this season. To beat this impressive Celtic side, Rangers will have to recapture the magic that has seen them vanquish their Old Firm rivals several times over the years. In total Rangers have secured 164 wins over Celtic, and here we pick out the very best of them:
Rangers 8-1 Celtic, January 1, 1943
As World War II raged on and Scots awoke with sore heads following Hogmanay, the Old Firm derby played out in front of just 30,000 fans due to a restriction in the size of public gatherings. When George Young rocketed in a 50-yard free kick to put Gers 4-1 up in the second half, Celtic’s Malky McDonald argued that a Rangers player was offside and berated the referee. He was sent off and subsequently fined £10 and banned for the rest of the season. Teammate Matt Lynch continued haranguing the ref and was also sent off, leaving Celtic down to nine men. Rangers then took them apart as Torry Gillick scored a hat-trick.
Rangers 3-2 Celtic, 1973 Scottish Cup Final
Celtic had just won the title for the eighth time in a row and looked set to make it another double when Kenny Dalglish gave them the lead in the cup final. But Rangers stunned their rivals with goals from Derek Parlane and Alfie Conn, only to see George Connelly level from the spot. The momentum seemed to be swinging in Celtic’s favour but Gers defender knocked in the winner with his studs and the Blue half of Glasgow went wild. It was Rangers’ first domestic trophy in seven years and was made all the sweeter as it marked the club’s centenary.
Rangers 5-1 Celtic, August 27, 1988
Celtic went into this game as reigning champions, having completed the double a few months earlier, but they were absolutely annihilated by an in-form Rangers side. Graham Souness’ men established themselves as the new superpower in Scottish football as goals from Ray Wilkins, Kevin Drinkell and Mark Walters and a brace from Ally McCoist spurred them on to a comfortable victory in front of a roaring Ibrox crowd. That thumping win set the tone for the rest of the season and for the next decade as Gers wrestled the crown back from their arch-rivals and went on to equal Celtic’s record of nine consecutive titles.
Rangers 1-0 Celtic, March 17, 1997
It may seem strange to pick out this one ahead of classics like the 2002 cup final, where Rangers won 3-2 courtesy of goals from Craig Moore, Ronald De Boer and Michael Mols, or the 3-0 victory where Rangers took the title right at the end of the 1998-99 season. Frankly, there have been so many great Rangers victories over Celtic over the years that it is hard to whittle it down to five, but this scrappy win gets the nod for its significance. This was the year Rangers made it nine wins in a row, and over the course of the season they beat Celtic four times. But Celtic were closing the gap on them at the top of the table by mid-March, and a beleaguered and injury-stricken Rangers side went into this game knowing defeat could see the momentum swing in their rivals’ favour. But Walter Smith’s side secured a scrappy win through a Brian Laudrup goal and effectively sealed the title. If Rangers are to stop Celtic this season that battling spirit and scrappiness could come in handy. It might be too early for Gers to win back the title after all these years, but the latest betting odds that have Rangers at 10/11 to win it without Celtic look attractive. If Rangers can finish second, beat Celtic and win a cup you would have to say that is a successful season. 

Rangers 5-1 Celtic, November 26, 2000 

Another rout to wrap things up. Rangers were reeling after a 6-2 reverse at Parkhead that August, but they exacted sweet revenge at Ibrox. Lorenzo Amoruso produced one of the best performances Ibrox has seen by leading Celtic a merry dance all afternoon. He capped his performance with a goal and Barry Ferguson, Tore Andre Flo, De Boer and Mols piled the misery on Celtic. It is a reminder of the fantastic calibre of player that Ibrox has seen over the years. De Boer, Laudrup, Ferguson, Flo, Amoruso, McCoist, Wilkins, Hateley, Paul Gascoigne Andy Goram, Richard Gough, Jim Baxter, Davie Cooper, John Greig… the list goes on and on. The current crop is nowhere near that sort of level but that should be the aspiration and there is a wonderful heritage to draw inspiration from.

Author bio:

Martin Green is an experienced sports writer and tipster. He has been covering Scottish football for many years.


  1. winning the title @ parkhead.

  2. Has to be May 1999. Brother Hugh Dallas takes a coin to the head. He is bleeding on the pitch and the Celtic fans are celebrating his injury.
    Once the blood is wiped away, he blows the whistle for our very own Gio Van Bronckhorst to take a free kick. Ball goes in the box and our Tony Vidmar trips over, and Brother Dallas immediately points to the spot for a very soft penalty and then runs over to the by-line towards the Shellic support to listen to them spew their bile at him, and he loved every minute. Up steps the hammer and we are up 2-0,, winners at 3-0 and what a game, title in the bag. The shellic team and fans were sick, raging, frustrated and beaten.
    It was beautiful!

    1. Well if that's the way you want to win games....

      Personally I'd sooner see my team win on merit rather than have a "Brother" referee do it for them.


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