Rangers manager Graeme Murty thinks that “given the opportunity”, Alfredo Morelos can break his Old Firm goal-scoring duck in Sunday’s Scottish Cup semi-final with Celtic at Hampden – but admits it is only “one part” of what the Light Blues need from the Colombian striker.
Morelos has missed a number of gilt-edged chances in previous Old Firm clashes and the 18-goal Colombian has said he is going to score at the national stadium on Sunday to make up for his earlier misses.
Murty admits, though, that the 21-year-old needs to take any chances that come his way “with both hands” if the Gers are to secure their place in next month’s final.
“I’ve seen Alfredo saying in the press that he is going to score – that’s the mindset of a centre-forward,” Murty said, as quoted by BT Sport.
“I believe in the old adage that you’d rather have centre-forwards in the position to miss chances than have them not getting there.
“I believe that Alfredo does get there, that we can find him in there and I do believe that given the opportunity, he could hit the back of the net for us.
“It’s about making sure we give him those opportunities and when he gets those – and he may only get one – he takes it with both hands.
“He also needs to make sure the rest of his game is on point because taking chances is just one part of what we need from him.”
The Light Blues haven’t win in nine attempts against Celtic – their worst run in the club’s history – and last recorded a victory over their bitter rivals at the same stage of the 2016 Scottish Cup when Mark Warburton’s side triumphed on penalties.
With Celtic looking to make history by winning an unprecedented back-to-back domestic treble there’s extra incentive for the Gers to put one over on Brendan Rodgers’ side.
Football Insider verdict
Getting a goal against Celtic will prove to be a huge monkey off Morelos’ back after some really bad misses in earlier Old Firm games. The Colombian has been a fantastic signing and getting his first Old Firm game could help him take his game to the next level. The 21-year-old’s work-rate often goes unmentioned too and even if he doesn’t get his name on the scoresheet, Morelos has the attributes to cause problems for the Celtic defence and create opportunities for his team-mates.