Not title celebration but still cause for cheers
When Anthony Stokes slotted home a penalty at Celtic Park yesterday to give Hibs a 2-1 lead, Rangers fans would have been preparing for a party. Celtic have hardly shown battling qualities all season so not many would have tipped the Hoops to battle back for all three points.
That’s exactly what they did though and Morten Rasmussen’s late winner means that regardless of what Rangers do at Ibrox today, there will be no clinching of the SPL title.
Until the league is sewn up, there will be some doubts in some fans minds but in reality, 4 points from 5 games should be easy pickings for Rangers. 3 points today are definitely winnable against a Hearts side sitting in sixth place.
Hearts can still end up in fourth place so there is a motivational level for the Jambos but it’s surely not as high as the motivational level at Ibrox?
The last game at Ibrox saw Hearts take a point with ten men although they would have been gutted at losing a late equaliser. However, the two sides met at Tynecastle not too long and Rangers trounced the Edinburgh club 4-1.
Rangers have been stumbling of late but this is not uncommon for a team cruising to a title. When the gap becomes so big, it is natural for players to mentally switch off a bit.
A full crowd at Ibrox roaring the team on in the knowledge that 3 away games are coming up should be enough to put Rangers within one game of their 53rd league title.
Rangers are away at Easter Road next Sunday but with Celtic playing at Dundee United prior to the Leith kick-off, it would not be a major shock to see Rangers entering the Hibs game as 2009/10 champions.
Rangers fans, do you expect a better performance today?