Celtic vs Rangers listed as one of sport's greatest ever rivalries by ESPN

By David Walton

February 20, 2019

Celtic have incredibly been listed above the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo, Roger Federer, and the Boston Red Sox in terms of big rivalries.

The Hoops’ historic rivalry with Rangers came in second place, in a poll done by ESPN’s Head in the Game show. It’s one of only two football rivalries in the top five.

Of course, it isn’t enough to overcome the likes of Joe Frazier vs Muhammad Ali. The boxing icons take the number one spot in the list, with Celtic vs Rangers an incredible second.

Celtic have been bossing Rangers for a long time now (Alan Rennie/Action Plus via Getty Images)

This is despite the fact the likes of Ronaldo vs Messi is in there. Long-standing tennis rivalry Roger Federer vs Rafael Nadal also takes pride of place at number three.

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In fifth place, the Boston Red Sox and New York Yankees of baseball earn a spot too. But the rivalry between Celtic and Rangers is the only football club rivalry on the list.

There remains a tense atmosphere in those games to this date

Even though Rangers no longer cease to exist in their original form, there’s no denying these matches still have a tingle to them. There’s no better feeling than getting one over them, regardless of the venue. It brings surreal joy to the Celtic support.

For long spells, the rivalry between the Glasgow sides has had a unique rivalry to it. Two sets of supporters filled with hate and disdain for one another.

Of course, Rangers have been doing their best to take that atmosphere away this year. Reducing Celtic’s support to just 800 at Ibrox was petty, and all came because they couldn’t take a beating on their own ground.

Joe Frazier and Muhammad Ali top the list of all-time sporting rivalries (Photo by SGranitz/WireImage)

But, in truth, that just goes to show the nature of the rivalry. It tells a lot about how the clubs feel about each other and proves the hatred they have for one another.

Celtic have been bossing Rangers around in the big picture for years now. The competitiveness of the rivalry has certainly taken a knock, and one win for Rangers doesn’t change that. Celtic are looking like becoming eight-in-a-row champions, showing the dominance they now have in this rivalry.

But, it’s still interesting to see that others still rank the Glasgow derby up there with such legendary rivalries.