Ally McCoist has told Rangers boss Steven Gerrard to take a leaf out of Craig Levein’s tactics book if he wants to learn how to topple Celtic
The new Ibrox boss, pictured, suffered a 1-0 defeat in his first Old Firm clash on Sunday. His attempt to contain Celtic failed to pay off during a one-sided Parkhead triumph as Olivier Ntcham’s winner broke Rangers’ resistance.
It could have been a heavier scoreline had it not been for Ibrox stopper Allan McGregor and the woodwork, which was struck four times.
The defeat has sparked another round of debate on whether Rangers are any closer to catching up with Brendan Rodgers’ dominant double treble winners, but former Ibrox boss McCoist is certain progress has been made.
However, he believes a change in approach is required if Celtic are to be stopped when the sides meet again on 29 December. Having watched Hearts stun Celtic 4-0 last year before winning 1-0 at Tynecastle last month, he reckons the Levein masterplan is the way to go.
“Hearts have probably shown over the last couple of years how to capitalise on any weaknesses or vulnerabilities that Celtic have, particularly at Tynecastle and I think that’s the way to play them,” said Rangers’ all-time top scorer. “You need to get in about them. That takes a lot of energy but Hearts have proved it can be done.
“In the games at Tynecastle I’ve seen, they play with a tempo, a pace and an aggression that perhaps Celtic aren’t accustomed to and it poses them problems.”
But McCoist does not foresee any knee-jerk reaction coming from the Ibrox manager’s office after their poor Parkhead performance.
He said: “Rangers’ goalkeeper gave a man-of-the-match performance, so that tells you all you need to know about the game. But for Allan McGregor, who I thought was excellent, it could have been more than one. But there has definitely been progress made by Rangers. However, this result is maybe a wee reminder of how far they have to go to get back to challenging Celtic”.