What's the Story?

Sunday sees Rangers travel to Parkhead to face Celtic in the final Old Firm game of the season, the light blues will need to put on a far better display than the one shown at Hampden just a few weeks ago.

The news that Steven Gerrard could possibly become the new Rangers manager might just give this group of players a boost, ahead of the fixture.

Here are the 5 storylines to follow vs Celtic.

1- CAN WE STOP BROWN & ROGIC DICTATING THE PLAY? 

This is something we have failed to do in all the old firm games this season, out with the one at Parkhead in December. It is simply unacceptable.

Allowing them the freedom and space to pass in between us has proved to be our undoing. We must press them, get tight and do not allow Brown the freedom to operate as he wishes in the centre of the park.

Closing down Rogic anytime he picks up the ball would prove useful in stopping his scoring spree in these games. It’s not as if we are talking about two world-class players here, we are simply just allowing them far too much time on the ball to dictate the play in the manner they see fit.

It’s time to stop it and set a marker down. Enough is enough.

Celtic line up without any great surprises or secrets so it is our sole responsibility to counter it.

2-WILL MURTY THROW UP ANY TACTICAL OR SELECTION SURPRISES?

Murty is not getting the job. Thank goodness I say, this game will serve as his last big match in charge, he might just use it as an opportunity to throw caution to the wind and play some curve balls, either in the tactical or personnel departments.

I can’t see Murty changing his system, he has been extremely stubborn in this area. I expect much more of the same, my only hope is that he at least instructs the players to deploy a higher pressing system, with more pushing than the one we saw at Hampden just a few weeks back.

3-CAN THE PLAYERS SHOW UP THIS TIME?

I don’t think it’s an overreaction to state that the last match was an all-round sheer and utter embarrassment, both in terms of result and performance. It was as bad a display in an Old Firm match as I’ve had the displeasure of witnessing.

Even victory on Sunday will not put it right, nor should it with many supporters, however, this is a group that owes the fans big style, of that there is simply no question.

I hold the manager and players accountable in equal measure, after all, it is they who cross the white line onto the park. Too often too many times in recent memory this group have failed to show up, some of the squad are extremely experienced international players.

Stop making excuses and turn in a performance the fans deserve.

4-HOW WILL ALNWICK HANDLE THE OCCASION?

Wes Foderingham has been all but ruled out due to injury, that means Sunday’s game will be a chance for Jack Alnwick to impress any potential suitors.

I think it’s fair to assume that Alnwick has no long term future at the club, news this week that Allan McGregor has singed a pre contract only strengthens that view.

Alnwick’s displays have been shaky at best, he has not displayed any great confidence and commanded his area the way a keeper at a big club like ours should. He has failed to seize the limited number of opportunities.

In my option he is just not good enough and although I wish him all the best in the future an upgrade in that position is necessary.

5-CAN DORRANS KEEP UP HIS FORM OF LAST WEEK?

Last week in the match at Ibrox vs Hearts Dorrans had one of his best displays in a Rangers jersey, playing a deeper role, he dictated the play, picking the ball up from the defenders and helping to start attacking moves, that said with all due respect he was not brought to the club to play against Hearts.

This is a player who has played at the highest level in England and for Scotland at International level, more is and should be expected of him. Previous encounters with Celtic have been less than spectacular, in my opinion he has been a passenger at times, most notably in the game at Ibrox at the start of the season and again a few weeks ago at Hampden.

Dorrans and Murphy are the two players that must show up if we are to hold any chance of capturing victory. It might be a case of too little too late for this season but sending a message out in terms of next season is just as important.

Tell me your predictions as always.

@steven_harrigan @abouttherangers