Derek McInnes admits his side are a 'good bit off' Celtic and Rangers

By Connor Gordon

November 5, 2019

Aberdeen manager Derek McInnes believes his side can no longer keep up with Celtic and Rangers.

The Dons have been close challengers in recent years to the pair, even splitting them on occasion. However, after two thumping at the hands of the Glasgow pair, McInnes knows his chances are over.

The Aberdeen boss still believes he can be the closest to the Glasgow sides once the season is done.

Derek McInnes on Celtic and Rangers challenge

The 48-year-old Glaswegian deserves a lot of credit for the work he has put in with Aberdeen.

Derek McInnes doesn’t think his Aberdeen side can catch Celtic or Rangers. (Photo by Scott Baxter/Getty Images)

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Since taking over, he’s won a cup, got to finals, finished second many times and got the Dons into Europe. He has even taken a big scalp along the way against the Hoops and the Gers.

However, this season the big two seem to be pulling well away from the pack and McInnes knows it.

He told the Daily Record: “We can’t ignore the Celtic game but we have beaten the two teams around us.

“We’re a decent side. We’re a good bit off Celtic and Rangers at the minute but we are capable of winning games in this league and hopefully we can go on a winning run.”

Neil Lennon celebrating a win at Pittodrie. (Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images)

Aberdeen are seven points off Celtic and Rangers with the joint leaders having a game in hand.

Hoops duo proving key for Aberdeen success

To McInnes’ benefit, his teams have been broken down and rebuilt over his many years as boss.

However, it appears that the Celtic influence in the team proved to be part of the backbone behind part of his diamond squads. At a point, Ryan Christie was on loan and Jonny Hayes was performing well enough to seal a Celtic deal.

Ryan Christie during his loan spell at Aberdeen. (Photo by Tom Dulat/Getty Images)

Christie’s shining light with the Reds showed Brendan Rodgers that he had a future at the Hoops.

Let’s not forget the likes of Kenny McLean, James Maddison and Ryan Jack were all in that squad too.

The Dons have been dealt a bitter blow in recent years but Celtic and Rangers are pulling away again. That’s a testament to the continued quality and dominance installed by Rodgers and Neil Lennon.