Ian Durrant believes the Rangers players will stand up and be counted at Hampden on Sunday by upsetting the odds against Celtic in the Betfred Cup semi-final.
The Rangers squad came under fire after last month’s 5-1 hammering in the league at Celtic Park but Durrant says there are good characters in the Ibrox team. And he says it has been proved in the past that derby games can produce unexpected results.
He said: “I only know the ones that came in last year. Guys like Jason Holt, Andy Halliday and Harry Forrester. They are characters and they believe in their own ability.
“Martyn Waghorn is never short of goals. Kenny Miller and Lee Wallace have been over it and they know what the script is. Danny Wilson has been there before.
“So they do have characters, but it is about the team. It’s a team effort and in an Old Firm a lot of the times they are not the prettiest of games. A lot of it depends on luck and if you get that first goal you’ve got a chance.
“Rangers will have great backing at Hampden and this is the time to stand up and be a Rangers player.
“I don’t think the semi-final will have a great bearing on the league but it will put down a marker to show if they can compete with Celtic.”
Durrant, a successful veteran of these games in the 1980s and 90s, said: “If you look back in history, it has happened. In Dick Advocaat’s first game, they lost 6-2 and then the next one, albeit after the addition of Ronald de Boer, they turned Celtic over 5-1. That was in a matter of two months.
“They were major underdogs at Parkhead and they will be major underdogs again. This is the time now and if you want to be a Rangers player this is the time to stand up.
“We have heard a lot of talk and a lot of things but this is it now in the semi-final. Celtic don’t have a good record at Hampden so maybe their time will come.
“There have been games when Rangers have been big underdogs and got results. But that counts for nothing. Everybody has to stand up, know their job and do their job. If that happens, and you get a bit of luck, you can win.”