Rangers fans could be forgiven for having high hopes going into Parkhead tomorrow. With Celtic in something of a malaise and our club riding high, hopes are even higher than early March that we can get the result we crave.
Even in March, when Josh Windass (remember him) opened the scoring, we truly started to let ourselves believe. Celtic at the time had not been in great form either, and a win for Rangers would convince a lot of us a title race was on.
As we know, while our side did put up a better fist of it in that match, the lungs and hearts collapsed with 35 minutes to go and there was just nothing left once Celtic had themselves in front.
It was one of the biggest aspects to jump out at the then-in waiting manager Steven Gerrard sitting among the directors – how Rangers’ lack of fitness meant they were dead on their feet with half an hour still to go.
While that aspect has clearly massively improved, the acid test is tomorrow – but there is a stark warning:
Celtic are a wounded animal right now, like they were in March, and Bears expecting our side to win this match based on that are being a touch premature.
The fact Rodgers’ men still delivered a win in Govan is testament to the momentum they’ve built up over the past seven years, and complacency from Rangers would be absolutely deadly.
Make no mistake – Celtic and their fans are absolutely aching to win this one, to, and I quote, ‘put us in our place’.
They’re a weaker team than they were, yes, and momentum is currently with Gerrard’s Rangers, but that counts for nothing on Old Firm day.
In short – take nothing for granted. We respect the team we will face, we will not fear them, but we’re acutely aware that they’re the champions seven years running and that wasn’t a fluke. They know how to win, and Rangers must be at the top of our game and then some to get a good result tomorrow.
Anything can happen during an Old Firm match. And usually does (!)