By Harvey Byrne

Former Rangers striker Gary McSwegan has hailed current forward Michael O’Halloran, stating he was surprised the player didn’t feature against fierce rivals Celtic.

O’Halloran, 25, moved to Ibrox in the winter window from St Johnstone, agreeing a four-and-a half-year deal at the club.

He has made 12 appearances for the club this season, remaining goaless, but has provided five goals and McSwegan believes the players “raw pace” is an “excellent asset to have”.

“I saw him play a lot at St Johnstone. He’s a nightmare for defenders because he has so much raw pace,” said McSwegan to the Scottish Sun.

“That is an excellent asset to have. I am bit surprised he hasn’t played more – especially against Celtic.

“I was at Parkhead last year on the day that St. Johnstone beat Celtic 1-0. O’Halloran was brilliant on the counter attack that day. They couldn’t get near them. He was too fast.

“Both O’Halloran and Danny Swanson, who scored the winning goal, had legs. That is something Rangers didn’t have in the two games they have played against Celtic this season.

“Celtic are so dominant that you have to hit them on the break and to do that you need somebody with pace. Raw pace like that will trouble any defender.

“Ask any defender what he hates the most and they will all say somebody running at them with pace.

“I think Michael can get an extra five or 10 per cent out of guys like Barrie McKay and Martyn Waghorn. They will up their game with him there as well.”

The Gers have faced their Glaswegian twice in the new campaign, suffering a humiliating 5-1 defeat in the league before meeting again in the League Cup semi-final stages playing out a more respectable 1-0 loss.

O’Halloran was named as an unused substitute in both matches with Joe Garner, Barrie McKay and Kenny Miller picked to lead the line over the two matches.

Rangers currently sit nine points below Celtic in second place, with the Hoops having played a game less.

Brendan Rodgers’ team are looking to win their 48th league title and sixth consecutive victory and the Scotland giants are well on course to do so after 10 fixtures.

In other Rangers news, fans reacted on Twitter to Frank de Boer’s sacking from Inter Milan.