Rangers aim to close gap as Celtic undertake hectic schedule

Rangers' Andy Halliday celebrates after Harry Forrester's late winner. Picture: SNS
Rangers' Andy Halliday celebrates after Harry Forrester's late winner. Picture: SNS
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Andy Halliday has urged Rangers to take advantage of Celtic’s busy programme and re-ignite the Ibrox club’s title challenge, writes Alan Pattullo.

Rangers play twice before Celtic are next in action in the league and have the chance to at least partly erode the 11-point lead their rivals have established over them.

Celtic’s attention is diverted by games against Barcelona and then Aberdeen in Sunday’s League Cup final. Halliday’s side, meanwhile, face two tough away fixtures against Partick Thistle this Saturday lunchtime and Hearts a week on Wednesday. The midfielder has not given up on the hope of finishing first, which means overhauling Aberdeen, currently in second place, as well as Celtic. On top of holding an 11-point lead over Rangers, the Parkhead side have a game in hand.

“No disrespect to Celtic, but we can’t settle for second,” said Halliday. “Don’t get me wrong, Celtic have been fantastic this season and are deservedly at the top of the table.

“We’ve got to try and chip away at the lead, get as many wins as we can and claw it back.”

Rangers avoided slipping further behind Celtic thanks to a winner in time added on by Harry Forrester against Dundee. Halliday has prescribed maximum points from Rangers’ next two games.

“We’re certainly going to try because we’ve not done enough ourselves [so far] to be in a title race,” he said. “We’ve dropped far too many points so we need to get momentum back.”