Pedro Caixhina has been pretty successful in his short time with Rangers, the side having avoided defeat in the five games since his arrival at Ibrox. Their excellent 3-0 victory over Aberdeen was followed by a 2-0 win over city rivals Partick Thistle, however the biggest challenge is yet to come. Celtic in the semi-finals of the Scottish Cup.
The Hoops surprised no-one in the manner of their runaway Scottish Premiership title success and they are a mere two wins away from achieving a domestic treble, the side also winning the Scottish League Cup. They haven’t lost an Old Firm match since the promotion of Rangers to the top-tier at the end of last season, however they have found the going increasingly difficult against their fierce rivals in each subsequent meeting.
The Hoops thrashed Rangers 5-1 in their first Old Firm clash of the season last September and followed this with a narrow 1-0 win in the Scottish League Cup in October. The Hoops then fought their way back from a goal down in the league meeting at Ibrox on New Years’ Eve, however a fourth straight win over their rivals was denied when the sides fought out a 1-1 draw at Celtic Park last month.
Can Rangers go one better and repeat their success of last year when they knocked Celtic out of the competition at this stage or will the Hoops reassert their superiority? Rangers have undeniably improved since the start of the season but it is hard to ignore Celtic’s utter dominance in the domestic game. Indeed Celtic should win this tie and win it comfortably within ninety minutes.
Nevertheless we wouldn’t be shocked to see Rangers score in a losing effort this weekend. The side are averaging around two goals-per-match since Pedro took the reins and they have found the net in all-but-one of their four meetings with Celtic this term.