This is how Rangers may line up in Old Firm clash v Celtic

Alex McLeish believes that Steven Gerrard will name his strongest Rangers squad for the Scottish Cup clash against Celtic on Sunday afternoon.

The Bears changed their team dramatically in the previous round against Cove, but the level of opposition will upgrade hugely in this Old Firm.

McLeish believes that Gerrard will use his playing time as motivation, as he always wanted to play in the biggest games at Anfield.


Speaking exclusively to Ibrox News, McLeish said, “No, I don’t see too many changes.

“Certainly, I believe that he will keep the nucleus and the momentum of the spine of this team, but also the guys who have done it on a long-term basis will want to keep playing.

“Just like Gerrard did at Liverpool. He knew that sometimes he needed a rest, but when the crucial games were upon them, he was the first picked.

“He will have a bunch of players in his head that will be first picks.”



There has been a core of 12 or 13 players that have taken their spots consistently every single week during this successful season.

Gerrard will know that the likes of Steven Davis, Conor Goldson, Allan McGregor and Borna Barisic will be certainties to start at Ibrox.

With the likes of James Tavernier potentially returning, too, it adds a selection headache in certain positions ahead of the huge clash.

It will be intriguing to see the team selection, but we believe McLeish is spot on with his verdict of the familiar faces taking their spots.

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‘Keep his mouth shut’ – Chris Sutton savages John Kennedy after humiliating Rangers claim

Chris Sutton has told John Kennedy to keep his mouth shut after his claim that Celtic were the best team in Scotland ahead of the Rangers clash.

The latest instalment of the Old Firm is on Sunday in the Scottish Cup fourth round at Ibrox, and it has got plenty of people talking.

Sutton insisted that silence was key this week after the Bears have romped the Scottish Premiership by 20 points with ease.


Speaking on BT Sports Scottish Football Extra, Sutton admitted that it has been a humiliating season for the Hoops.

“I can’t believe he said it,” he said.

“I know that people are saying that he was asked the question, the best thing John Kennedy could have done is just keep his mouth shut.

“This season Celtic have been humiliated on the pitch, Rangers have waltzed the league, you have to take your hat off to them.

“Don’t say anything.”



You know it is a shocking claim to make when even Sutton comes out and savages your comments going into an Old Firm game.

The former Celtic man usually takes every last opportunity he can to fire at the Bears, but even he couldn’t get on the side of his old club on this one.

Borna Barisic fired back at those claims on Friday, and it appears as though all they have done have fired up the Light Blues squad even more.

Kennedy will be left red-faced should he leave Ibrox after being thumped on Sunday, and he has already started digging himself a big hole.

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Alex McLeish reacts to major Rangers development ahead of Celtic clash

Alex McLeish has questioned whether James Tavernier will have all the necessities needed to return for Rangers in the Scottish Cup clash with Celtic.

Steven Gerrard shared a major update on Friday, claiming the skipper will be assessed today and tomorrow before deciding if he can return from his injury.

McLeish believes that the medical team will be assessing Tavernier’s speed and agility before throwing him into the deep end of an Old Firm clash.


Speaking exclusively to Ibrox News, McLeish said, “It depends on what he has been doing with the physios and the sports-science team.

“That will be crucial. They will be determining what kind of level he is at, his speed, is he rusty? Is he turning as quick? All these little necessities.

“Before they decide if he comes back into the team. He’s basically got all of the fitness of the whole season in his body, so he has that and that shouldn’t be a problem.

“The only question is if he needs two or three games to get back into his stride.”


Tough return.

It would be harsh of us to expect Tavernier to be thrown straight back into the action after months out in an Old Firm, but he will be relishing that opportunity.

Unfortunately for him, Nathan Patterson has been in excellent form during his absence at Ibrox, and the chance to get his first start in a Celtic clash is equally as exciting.

Having Tavernier even back on the bench and in the dressing room would be a massive boost to the squad, and to the likes of Patterson.

Either way, this is a huge boost to Gerrard and the squad.

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Sky Sports journalist relays major Rangers fitness blow ahead of clash v Celtic

Ryan Jack has been ruled out of Sunday’s Old Firm clash but the consequences are even more severe with the Rangers midfielder set to miss the rest of the season.

Jack, 29, had a long spell out between November and January where he missed 14 games but he bounced back to score on his return versus Ross County (January 17) before featuring in the next six games.

But he has been out of their last eight games and his worst fears have now been realised.


Rob Wotton delivered the news on Sky Sports News [16/04/21] and relayed on Football Daily’s Twitter.

“This is a big blow here not just for Rangers but for Scotland as well we’re hearing Ryan Jack will miss the rest of this season and Euros [European Championships] through injury,” he said.

Body blow

This is awful for Rangers but it’s absolutely horrendous news for Jack who will now miss the chance to represent his country at a major championship.

With the Light Blues out of Europe and the Premiership title already wrapped up the most important competitions are over for Steven Gerrard’s side, though the Scottish Cup is now a big aim, particularly as we have been pitted against Celtic.

He’ll be a miss but he was expected to be out anyway.

The reality is that we have shown we can cope with his absence with Steven Davis, Glen Kamara and Joe Aribo forging a terrific midfield partnership, while Scott Arfield has also come back into the picture of late.

But will be a crushing blow to Scotland and Jack this summer ahead of the showpiece finals, especially considering many games will be taking place in the UK.

That’s heartbreaking for Jack and we can only hope he can come back fighting fit from this latest setback.

We’ll need him for our assault on the Champions League and defence of our domestic crown so it’s vital he recuperates and ensures his body does not break down on him again.

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‘Don’t talk like that’ – Gers ace accuses rival manager of ‘disrespect’ after Old Firm claim

Rangers defender Borna Barisic has slammed John Kennedy over claims that Celtic are the superior team in Scotland.

Interim Bhoys manager Kennedy said his side were the “best team in the country on their day” last week. [Sunday Post]

This has clearly not gone down well with Rangers players, with Barisic giving a stern response to the claim two days before their Scottish Cup clash.


In quotes replayed by The Athletic’s Jordan Campbell on his personal Twitter profile, Barisic said: “It is the biggest joke I’ve heard this year.

“They didn’t win against us in three games and we are twenty points in front of them so it’s a little bit disrespectful to us.

“You always need to be realistic. If someone is twenty points ahead of you, you just don’t talk like that.”

All talk no substance from Kennedy

It really was a ludicrous claim but we’re not surprised anymore, Celtic are a team scrambling on their hands and knees for anything that will row back support with their fans.

Their defence of their title in search of 10-in-a-row has ended in humiliation and we reckon Kennedy is just trying to rouse their support and try to put some pressure on the Gers ahead of Sunday’s clash.

Unfortunately for them, it just won’t work with us.

We’re on a different level to them and that is why we are unbeaten in our last four Old Firms, winning the first three of those before a relatively pointless Premiership fixture last month after we had already wrapped up the title.

Barisic said it, we’re 20 points ahead so it’s not even up for debate as to who the top dogs are in Scotland.

We don’t need to respond to such stupidity but it’s encouraging to hear Barisic is up for the fight and refusing to let comments like that subside.

It shows the hunger and determination to oust them on Sunday and these comments will only add further fuel to the fire.

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