Steven Gerrard speaks and doesn’t know what day it is.
We have to be the best version of ourselves. A lot of good teams have come and posed us a problem, of late, but we’ve performed well collectively and individually. I’ve got confidence and believe that the players are about to deliver and if we reach our heights I’m confident we’ll get what we want.
It will be another three points. It would stretch our lead, three important points but it’s the 1st of January [sic]. I’d much rather be in our position, that’s for sure.
[On Celtic] It’s none of my business. I don’t pick their team. It looks like they will play a diamond. We know it will be a tough game.
Here’s a Guardian long read from December on the Ibrox Disaster of 1971, written by John Hodgman.
Steven Gerrard picks Leon Balogun instead of Filip Helander in defence. Ryan Kent replaces Ianis Hagi. Nir Bitton replaces Christopher Jullien for Celtic, as club captain and Auld Firm swedger supreme Scott Brown has to settle for a place on the bench.
Rangers: McGregor, Tavernier, Barisic, Goldson, Balogun, Davis, Kamara, Aribo, Kent, Roofe, Morelos
Subs: McLaughlin, Bassey, Hagi, Itten, Defoe, Zungu, Patterson, Barker, Helander
Celtic: Barkas, Frimpong, Laxalt, Bitton, Ajer, Soro, McGregor, Turnbull, Christie, Griffiths, Edouard
Subs: Hazard, Duffy, Taylor, Brown, Ajeti, Rogic, Ntcham, Elyounoussi, Elhamed
This is an Old Firm game with an added poignancy. It is 50 years to the day since the Ibrox disaster claimed the lives of 66 fans and injured more than 200 people. Until Hillsborough, it was the gravest day in British football history and today will be a day to commemorate those who went to watch a match and never made it home. And a lack of fans in the stadium will perhaps add yet more to that poignancy.
On the pitch, this is a key match, historic perhaps. Should Steven Gerrard’s Rangers win and extend their lead, then Celtic’s ten in a row would seem to have gone up in smoke. But should Neil Lennon’s Celtic, lately on something of a revival, pull off a famous win then Rangers’ wobbles might begin. Those are the stakes at hand, but the day will begin with remembrance for those lost so tragically half a century ago.