CALLUM McGregor was not at all shocked at how well Rangers did this season, but hopes Celtic will be able to “disorganize” them tomorrow at Ibrox.
In the entire 2020/21 season, Steven Gerrard’s side have lost only one home game – last month in the Betfred Cup quarter-final against St Mirren in Paisley.
They have also conceded just one goal at home all season against a Scottish foe – in a 3-1 victory over Motherwell a fortnight ago – and are sitting 16 points clear at the top of the Premier League.
McGregor is fully expecting a strong challenge for the Scottish title to be mounted by James Tavernier and his teammates – but he hopes Celtic will inflict their first loss in the league.
“They haven’t been underestimated by anyone here,” he said. They’ve got a strong defensive record, and that’s what they’ve built on in recent years for their success.
They are very durable and play well with their system. You still have a chance to score a goal when you do that and have good players and can easily have a run as they did.
That’s why it’s important for us to rise to the challenge. The Rangers were not underestimated at all. We’ve been working hard to fix things, and the next game is the most important one.
These are difficult games against Rangers and they have shown how well organized they are this season. We have to find a way to make them disorganized.
Last season, before the Old Firm’s opening game at Ibrox, Celtic were written off by many fans and analysts – and promptly cruised to a deserved 2-0 victory.
McGregor, who led Neil Lennon’s side to a six-game winning streak, recognizes that few people expect a good outcome and hopes that the end result will be the same.
It’s probably the same going into the game on Saturday,” he said. “It’s probably going to be that way to talk from the outside. But in the game, we have to demonstrate our identity, and hopefully we can achieve a positive result.