Rangers vs Celtic, it’s here and probably couldn’t have happened at a more unfortunate time. Injury and Covid ravaged, even as early as this morning, we are certainly up against it today. But this is Rangers, we are probably most dangerous when written off and with 50,000 behind us I am hoping for a herculean effort by everyone.
Team wise, Ryan Kent is back which is a huge plus. Nathan Patterson misses out however, due to a close contact identification by covid, which is a huge blow with Tavernier already injured also. Robby McCrorie starts in his biggest career game, to date, and one which could very quickly shape his Rangers future, what a chance to be a hero.
Helander and Goldson play in the middle with Barisic at left back to make up the rest of the defence. Aribo, Kamara and Davis shape the engine room and this is an area which Rangers have to win. Kemar Roofe and, previously mentioned, Ryan Kent return to the frontline to flank Alfredo Morelos.
Midfield and attack is arguably as strong as it can be which is a huge boost. Goalkeeper and defence is obviously weakened and that will have to stand the test that will come. They are very strong in attack and going forward like to press, but they are extremely wide open and play with a very attacking 4-2-4 today. Having watched them midweek, they give up a lot of space and position, there is certainly avenues that we can exploit if we get it right. Likewise if we don’t defend well then they could hurt us.
On the bench for Rangers we have cover in shape of Lundstram, Hagi, Itten, Sakala, Arfield and Bacuna. Very little defensive cover which is troubling and given our luck this week we have to hope it’s not needed during it.
So here we go, win today and we are off and running proper, anything else isn’t worth worrying about at the minute. A full strength Rangers and playing well, I would be looking forward to this game. I’m certainly not ready to throw the towel in however, as long as we leave everything on the pitch, whatever happens will happen.
We are Champions, let’s show everyone why.
Let’s go Rangers!
2 mins – Rangers break and Borna’s deflected cross finds its way to Alfredo who clips it over the bar.
3-12 mins – They have majority of possession but Rangers are very well organised, not offering much threat.
15 mins – Balogun recovery tackle is excellent as Kyogo threatens to get away.
16-18 mins – Kent twice threatens, first time he runs to bye line but cross judged to be out, then he picks up a loose ball and fires over.
20 mins – Chance, Poor header by Goldson finds Kyogo at back post, he fires wide.
26 mins – Sitter! Kyogo breaks the lines and squares it for a tap in, somehow he puts it wide, what a let off that is.
27 mins – Another chance as Ralston is in, Kent caught ball watching but the full back wastes the chance, that’s poor by Kent.
32 mins – POST! Good break by Rangers as Roofe switches it to Morelos who quickly plays it to Kent. He steadily guides a shot but it clips the post and goes wide, closest yet from Rangers.
38 mins – CAUTION. Turnbull goes into the book for a late challenge on Goldson.
43 mins – Davis free kick is straight into Hart’s hands, a weak effort but first save from either keeper.
45 mins – Goldson almost caught out on the stretch but Helander covers as Edouard almost got in behind. Corner is cleared and it is HT.
Rangers 0 Celtic 0 HT
Rangers have given up a lot of the ball and possession but have been well organised at the back. A little bit of luck because they have been wasteful in situations. The press is on for Rangers though if they can get up because they are nervous with the ball at the back and giving Rangers opportunities.
It’s a very tense game, in truth they are on top, certainly in possession and should be ahead through Edouard. We need to get more into things in midfield, get Davis and Kamara more involved. Joe Aribo has been decent and probably most lively midfielder. He has protected the full back well even if Balogun has done well against Kyogo, some fantastic tackling.
But no criticism certainly, we are under strength and giving everything after a tough shift on Thursday. Need to dig in, win the battles and see where that takes us, definite opportunities if they can use the ball better in the final third.
2nd half –
46-50 mins – Rangers win a couple of free kicks but come to nothing. Better first five minutes though.
55-58 mins – Few corners which don’t bring much but Borna’s delivery was better, Then he blazes one wide! Commentators curse I think!
59-61 mins – Efforts from Kent and Roofe go wide but this is much better, better on the ball and it’s there for us.
It’s a lot better so far, Davis and Kamara have taken this game by the scruff.
63-66 mins – Slight recovery from them but Turnbull wastes his delivery, most overrated midfielder in Scotland by a distance!
66 mins – CAUTION. Edouard is cautioned for checking McCrorie, suits us to slow it down after they are on top for a few mins.
67 mins – GOOOOAAAALLLLL! YESSSSSSSS!!! I’ve lost it! The corner comes in from Borna and Helander Bullets it beyond Hart who’s touch can’t keep it out! WE ARE AHEAD! 1-0!
68 mins – SAVE !!! Super Robby McCrorie spreads himself to block from Kyogo, what a save that was!
70 mins – Subs for Celtic, Turnbull and Edouard off, Soro and Rogic on.
73 mins – Lundstram on for Roofe.
77-78 mins – two chances for Buff, the first he steers wide and the second he slips as he was in on goal, so unlucky!
83 mins – Alfredo is off and on comes Fashion jr.
85 mins – MCCRORIE! What a save again as he uses his feet to keep out Kyogo again, Another brilliant moment from the keeper! 1-0 with minutes to go!
87 mins – Scramble! Kyogo cuts it back and Rangers are fortunate to get away with it. Nearly had a heart attack!
88 mins – Arfield is on for Kent
90 mins – Late chance for Fashion as Davis wins the ball, shot is easy though.
90 mins + 4! Last minute corner, Hart is up but we clear and the whistle goes!
RANGERS 1 Celtic 0!
What a win!!!
That second half was phenomenal and what an effort from the players! I get accused of being too pro this team but I love them, they give us absolutely everything and I can’t fault them at all. They bossed that second half and everyone ran themselves into the ground with an effort I said needed to be Herculean and it was.
Leon Balogun was named Man of the match and he was sensational but Robby McCrorie proved he is a future Rangers number 1 with two outstanding saves.
A huge victory for Rangers and what a towering header to clinch it. Borna with a sensational ball in and Fil bullets it home.
A really special victory and one I will savour for a long time!
By the way? Angeball? Don’t make me laugh – powderpuff.
Champions and we welcome the chase
Rangers 1 Celtic 0 – GLASGOW IS BLUE!