Gary McAllister knows Rangers need to stop Celtic’s 10 in a row before 9 in a row

Rangers assistant Gary McAllister has conceded it is imperative that the Ibrox club must use their Betfred Cup campaign to end Celtic’s monopoly of domestic honours, writes Andrew Smith

Rangers assistant manager, Gary McAllister. Picture: SNS

A major trophy has not resided in the Ibrox trophy cabinet since 2011 – the longest such hiatus – while in the past three years Celtic have enjoyed an unprecedented dominance of Scottish silverware with three straight trebles. The principal objectives of a campaign that has begun in blistering fashion for Steven Gerrard’s men may centre on ending Celtic’s bid to add to their eight consecutive championships, and the push for Europa League group-stage football that sees them away to Legia Warsaw on Thursday for a play-off first leg. However, the Rangers No 2 accepts that today’s trip to East Fife for the sides’ Betfred Cup last-16 tie has the potential to help shape the season in favour of Gerrard’s men.

Asked if Rangers had to stop a tenth Celtic trophy before they stopped a ninth Celtic league title, McAllister, pictured, said: “Absolutely, that’s a fact. We’re in a competition to try and win things and that’s on our minds, that’s what we’re judged on – always.

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“When you’re associated with this club as a player or on the coaching staff it’s about winning. This club is about winning and we have to try and get back to winning ways.

“The League Cup is early in the season and comes quick. You don’t have to win many games to get to the end of it, so I totally agree [you can make a statement]. It could be the start of something. We’ve got to look at it like that. People will say of the four competitions we’re in priority-wise, it probably sits at the bottom, but not for us. It’s the one that comes first, it’s the first final.

“And hopefully against Legia we can go through and get into Europe proper. We’re in four competitions, that’s why we have two teams [of players] and healthy competition for each position.

“There’s a comfort from sitting at the side and looking at a strong bench. From Thursday to Sunday, we can freshen up most positions, that’s a nice place to be.”