Rangers title glory would help Steven Gerrard heal from ‘brutal low’ of Liverpool failure, as Ally McCoist hails ‘incredible improvement’ under boss ahead of Celtic Old Firm clash January 1, 2021 – Posted in: Soccer

Rangers face bitter rivals Celtic on Saturday, with boss Steven Gerrard desperate for glory this season to help heal the ‘brutal low’ of his failure to be a champion with Liverpool.

Gerrard has led Rangers to an impressive renaissance since his appointment in charge in 2018, with the Glasgow giants currently flying high 16 points clear at the top of the table.

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Steven Gerrard has revitalised Rangers and has helped return the club to the pinnacle of Scottish football

Rangers have been utterly dominant so far this term, with 17 clean sheets in 21 games and just five goals conceded in the league, and the latest test of their title credentials comes on Saturday as they host their Old Firm rivals.

Winning the title has become an obsession for the blue half of Glasgow, with Rangers fans desperate to stop their old enemies from clinching a tenth straight Scottish championship.

It will be something Gerrard is used to, having been obsessed with the same thing throughout his celebrated Liverpool career, but for the decorated midfielder the big one never came.

In a recent interview with Alan Shearer for The Athletic, the Ibrox boss has said the pain of not winning the Premier League with the Reds is still raw and still haunts him.

But he hopes guiding Rangers to their 55th Scottish title would go some way to helping him move on.

He came close on a number of occasions, but none closer than in 2014 when Liverpool led the Premier League by five points with three games left, only to be beaten to the title by Man City.

And he admitted that agonising blow still fuels him.

Gerrard’s infamous slip still haunts Liverpool fans and the Liverpool legend to this day

Sky Sports

Gerrard’s infamous slip still haunts Liverpool fans and the Liverpool legend to this day

“Yes, it’s definitely a motivation,” said Gerrard.

“Having that happen and how it happened towards the end of my Liverpool career was a real, brutal low for me. As a group and a team and a club, it was a big disappointment because we came so close.

“The fact they’ve won the title since then and are current champions — which is fantastic for me to see — has certainly helped the healing.

“But from a personal point of view, having a big high as a coach and manager would certainly contribute to that healing as well.”

As things stand it’s looking pretty good for Rangers, although Neil Lennon’s Celtic side do have three games in hand.

Victory at Ibrox would certainly lift the mood at Celtic Park following the Hoops’ dreadful start to the campaign, which saw them exit both European competitions while Rangers are through to the Europa League knockout stages.

Rangers legend Ally McCoist is confident of the team’s chances thanks to the significant improvements made since Gerrard’s arrival.

But the former player and manager certainly knows that the coach will be ultimately judged on trophies, and says it’s time the club finally ended their wait.

“Without a doubt the improvement in some of the players has been excellent,” McCoist told Friday’s talkSPORT Breakfast.

Gerrard has been credited with improving the players at Rangers and turning them into potential champions

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Gerrard has been credited with improving the players at Rangers and turning them into potential champions

“The lad [Glen] Kamara, they signed him from Dundee for 50,000 and he’s a former Arsenal academy player, and he’s been exceptional, the full-backs [James] Tavernier and [Borna] Barisic and [Connor] Goldson have improved no end.

“There is absolutely no doubt, the improvement in Rangers is there for everyone to see… but now’s the time they need to start winning something.

“Steven has been very, very unlucky not to win anything as yet. They should have won the Scottish League Cup last year, they totally dominated Celtic.

“But it’s now time for Rangers to win something.”

Ally McCoist reveals he tried to sign Jamie Carragher for Rangers when he left Liverpool

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