Kick Off:- 15:00 GMT, Sunday 13 March 2011
Ibrox Park, Glasgow
Rangers will be keen to get domestic football matters back on top of their agenda following…
a) the Government-led “Summit” convened to deal with the infamous Old Firm cup tie of last week, the upshot of which seemed to be that the Police will brief managers and players on behavioural expectations at Old Firms games – in much the same way as your mother would brief you on behavioural expectations at school. There were some other vague ideas about playing the fixture midweek, closing pubs for a few hours before and after games and other never-gonna-happen proposals.
b) the PSV Europa League draw
Anyway – back to Sunday’s game…
Rangers approach this game on the back of three very, very tough games. Even though they beat St Mirren they didn’t look the least bit convincing doing it and had to work extremely hard to claim all 3 points. If anything, the game against PSV, which they drew, was actually more comfortable for them.
However, they emerge from their recent fixtures out of the Scottish Cup, but well in contention for the SPL title and well in contention to proceed to the quarter-finals of the Europa League knock-out stages and in general good heart.
Kilmarnock have bounced back extremely well from their 5-0 drubbing at the hands of Aberdeen, with two 2-0 victories in a row, the most recent of which was an excellent win at Hearts – their second win there this season, having won even more comfortably (3-0) back in October in the CIS Cup.
Rangers’ last 5 game record reads…
[Rangers’ score first]
10 March Away 0-0 vs PSV Eindhoven (Uefa Europa League)
6 March Away 1-0 vs St Mirren (SPL)
2 March Away 0-1 vs Celtic (Scottish Cup)
27 February Home 4-0 vs St Johnstone (SPL)
24 February Away 2-2 vs Sporting Lisbon (Uefa Europa League)
Kilmarnock’s last 5 game record reads…
[Kilmarnock’s score first]
5 March Away 2-0 vs Hearts (SPL)
26 February Home 2-0 vs St Mirren (SPL)
19 February Away 0-5 vs Aberdeen (SPL)
12 February Away 1-2 vs Hbs (SPL)
2 February Away 1-0 vs Motherwell (SPL)
Every season, Rangers seem to go through a spell where it’s injury problems, suspension problems, fixture congestion problems all at once, and now seems to be the time for all of those plus the problems of the Old Firm cup tie fallout for them for this season. However, the team on the park somehow manages to not be overly affected by problems and just keeps rolling on. It’s a testament to the drive and determination that manager Walter Smith instils in them and their own team spirit that they can do that.
So, as ever, a mountain to climb for whoever is the opposition – in this case Kilmarnock. Killie have the passing game to trouble Rangers, but the last game here (3-0 to Rangers) demonstrated that they didn’t have the muscle, as Rangers totally physically dominated them and in the end brushed them aside like flies.
Can’t think of any reason why it should be different this time. Rangers to win.
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Jinxatious is the Chief Editor of SportingAttitude.com
An avid writer, on an eclectic range of subjects, he brings to bear editorial experience garnered with a national newspaper in South-East Asia. He also has sportscasting experience, as a cricket commentator, and his passion for sport extends beyond Cricket, to Football, Tennis, and Olympic Sports.