Even McCoist admits Celtic are in "very good position"; says rivals can't afford to lose Derby
A Celtic win at Ibrox could make our Scottish Premiership lead beyond Rangers, and the Bhoys are in a “very, very good position”, says Ally McCoist.
The former Rangers player and manager, and close friend of Tommy Burns, likes to wind us up on occasion. However, he’s been even-handed with his analysis of the Scottish Premiership title race.
On Sky Sports earlier today, the ex-Scotland international said that though both teams are in good form, Celtic have the upper hand. The Bhoys have a three-point lead at the top of the table, established in style when the Hoops battered Rangers 3-0 at Celtic Park.
With at least two derbies next month; one in the league, one in the cup, it’ll be a frantic period for Celtic supporters, and a potentially glorious one.
Hardly the most popular figure around Celtic Park, McCoist at least has given credit where it’s due. And explaining his position on Sky Sports, he said: “I don’t think Rangers can clearly afford to get beat.
“Postecoglou has done a great job at Celtic. They’ve got themselves in a very, very good position.
“From Rangers’ point of view, defeat is unthinkable, it really is. I think that would make the gap far too big.
“They’re hanging onto Celtic’s coat-tails. This game coming up, I think we’ll see a different Rangers. It’s certainly a game they cannot afford to lose.”
If Ally McCoist is saying it… Celtic absolutely have the upper hand on Rangers right now
Turmoil at Ibrox, a change of managers mid-season, unrest with the supporters… if there was a time to play Rangers, it’s probably now, you could argue.
Except, none of that really matters. Some clichés are true; everything external goes out the window when Celtic line up at Ibrox on the 3rd of April.
Still, if even Rangers-minded pundits are getting a bit nervous about it, it’s probably a good sign. Celtic, absolutely, are the domestic force right now. For all our rivals are competing in the Europa League, it’s domestic duty that’s most crucial.
Few, if any, in the media class expected Celtic to be leading Rangers at this point in the season. Let alone with a fantastic, adaptable squad who have shown real flexibility over the course of the 21-22 campaign. Both teams are likely to miss key players, but it’s Celtic who look better-equipped to deal with that.
Ally McCoist – and I never thought I’d type this – is right. Celtic are leading, and beating Rangers wouldn’t just offer a material edge in the league, but also a heavy psychological one.
It’s going to be the biggest Glasgow Derby in years.