Rangers players can handle Celtic pressure, says boss Graeme Murty

Celtic manager Brendan Rodgers waves to the crowd at the final whistle as Celtic win 3-0 during the Scottish Cup Quarter Final match between Celtic and Greenock Morton at Celtic Park

The gap is as narrow as it has been since the Light Blues' financial meltdown and a win could seriously heap pressure on Brendan Rodgers' side in the fight for the title.

Brendan Rodgers' side twice pegged back their rivals in a see-saw opening half before Simunovic was shown a straight red card for elbowing Rangers forward Alfredo Morelos.

Rangers' Josh Windass drew first blood in the Old Firm derby after a mistake by Dedryck Boyata, but his opener was cancelled out by Tom Rogic's curling effort.

Rodgers aimed barbs at that ambition at the time and, with familiar self-contradiction, he did it again in the run-up to this occasion. But I thought after they scored their goal we didn't get our composure back for 15 or 20 minutes.

One may assume that there will be no diminution of Rodgers' ambition at Ibrox.

"This is the game, certainly since I've been at the football club, that there has been most interest in from south of the border", he said.

"But the difference is I've got an opportunity to do something about it on Monday morning - making sure that group of players don't stay in the doldrums too long".

"I've got a group of players who are hurting, frustrated and are wanting to do better. I would say this is the game people are talking about most in my career". "It's a game that excites us".

"I'm desperate to experience the atmosphere", he said. But we'll do our talking on the pitch.

Murty told the media: "We have to respect what Celtic are about, we understand the threats that they bring, they didn't win the league past year for no reason". They're on top, the defending champions, and we are chasing them, but we need to make sure we're not just defined by this one game. For me it's a must win game for Rangers as a Celtic win ends any doubt about where the league title is going to go.

"A couple of comments on social media made me laugh - that Glaswegian humour that is very prevalent".

"I want us to be confident enough and expressive enough to go and take the game to them with what we're good at". They are capable of playing a number of different formations. "That is a real positive for us as a football club".

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