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17th Mar, 2018 | 9:00pm

Graeme Murty reveals what he experienced for first time at Rangers in Old Firm loss

Rangers manager Graeme Murty has said he thinks that for the first time since he joined the Ibrox giants in 2016 there was a “sense of expectation” among their supporters in last week’s Old Firm clash.

Murty has taken charge of the Gers three times against their bitter rivals – as well as being Under-20’s head coach as Mark Warburton and Pedro Caixinha have taken on the Hoops – but thinks last weekend was the first time the fans have had that belief.

Ibrox was packed to the rafters for last week’s crunch clash, which Celtic won 3-2, and the Gers boss admitted the atmosphere was unlike anything he has ever experienced.

“The atmosphere was like nothing I have ever experienced,” Murty said, as quoted by The Herald.

“I think that possibly for the first time since I have been at the football club there was a sense of expectation against Celtic.

“I hope we’re showing we’re closer to them. I hope we’re showing the distance between us is shortening. But we still have to go and take that next step which is win the game.”

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The Gers haven’t beaten their rivals in the league since 2012 and came agonisingly close in last weekend’s clash as they twice led Brendan Rodgers’ side only to throw it away each time.

The defeat ended the Gers’ hopes of winning the Scottish Premiership this season but Murty has taken them much closer than either Warburton or Caixinha managed and – barring a remarkable collapse – should cut the gap from last season by over 20 points.

Murty’s side return to Scottish Premiership action on Saturday when they face Kilmarnock at Ibrox and look to bet back to winning ways and stay ahead of third-placed Aberdeen in the table.

Football Insider verdict:

The Gers are much closer than they were 12 months ago and Murty deserves a lot of credit for that but the Ibrox boss now has two more chances to turn that sense of expectation from supporters into a win and silence his critics. Murty looks like a shoo-in to be handed the reins at Ibrox on a long-term basis in the summer and beating Celtic before then end of the season would likely go a long way towards securing that. A Scottish Cup win in next month’s semi-final would go down particularly well with Gers fans as it would end Celtic’s hopes of a back-to-back treble.

In other Rangers news, Allen’s Ibrox masterclass would continue if he signed this midfielder who humiliated Scott Brown.

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