Celtic and Rangers will play for the first time outside of Scotland after the Light Blues announced their participation in the Sydney Super Cup alongside their Old Firm rivals.
The four-team event, which kicks off on November 16 during the domestic football break for the World Cup, will also include A-League clubs Sydney FC and Western Sydney Wanderers.
Rangers will play Western Sydney Wanderers on November 16 before facing Celtic in the Old Firm on November 20.
Both games will be held at the 83,500-capacity Accor Stadium, which is most known for hosting sports events and ceremonies at the Sydney 2000 Olympics.
Rangers’ manager Giovanni van Bronckhorst commented on the news on the club’s official Twitter account:
“I am delighted to have the opportunity to take Rangers to Sydney next November.
“I know from my previous spell at the club as a player that we have supporters based all around the world, with Australia a particular hotbed for Rangers fans.
“This is a terrific opportunity for us to go and see them in person, as well as get some valuable game time for the players who won’t be at the World Cup against a good challenge in Western Sydney Wanderers and also the Old Firm match.”
While both parts of the Old Firm have received criticism from supporters for their involvement, Rangers’ commercial and marketing director James Bisgrove underlined the “substantial” financial benefits.
The event, according to Bisgrove, will “benefit the club to the same level as a complete season in the SPFL Premiership.”
He further added, “We’ve been in negotiations for a few weeks for this particular opportunity and, to be frank, it’s a sizeable benefit to the club from a commercial perspective.
“I think to an extent that we’ve never had an offer of this level for two friendly games, for an international tournament.
“It’s something the board has unanimously looked at and seen as a positive opportunity for Rangers Football Club.
“When we talk about wanting to maximize the commercial potential of this football club we felt this is an opportunity to really help us achieve that ambition.”
There were also comments from the former Rangers manager Graeme Souness, in support of keeping the Old Firm derby overseas.
“Unfortunately, our world is not pure anymore. It’s all about the money. In Scotland, we have to be aware of that. It makes common sense commercially to go down there. It’s all about getting people on board when they’re young.
“It’s the Old Firm. It’s Rangers against Celtic, wherever it is there will be a full stadium and lots of passion involved. I get it for the commercial reasons. As a football man, it’s not ideal but I think we have to broaden our horizons. Money talks.”