Celtic strike icon Henrik Larsson believes the Old Firm is the biggest derby in the world – and thinks the only one that comes close is El Clasico between Barcelona and Real Madrid.
The Swede played in some of the biggest derbies in the world during his time with Celtic, Feyenoord, Barcelona and Manchester United but puts the Glasgow clash ahead of all of them.
Larsson revealed his first Old Firm blew him away and admitted he had never experienced “anything” like it.
“The Old Firm is the biggest, the other ones are not really proper derbies,” Larsson told Soccer AM, as quoted by the Daily Record.
“For me it’s got to be two teams from the same city, that’s the way I see it and nothing really compares. La Liga when you play against Real Madrid, it’s good but.
“I think we lost that one, it was Ibrox, the atmosphere was very noisy, I’d never experienced anything like that before, and coming into that with Gazza, Goram, Laudrup, they were a really strong side.”
Larsson would go on to etch his name into Scottish football folklore with his goalscoring exploits for the Hoops during his time in Glasgow.
The striker hit 242 goals in 315 matches for the Hoops before moving on to join Barcelona in 2004.
Football Insider verdict
Larsson is absolutely spot on. There’s nothing like an Old Firm derby anywhere on the planet. When the Glasgow giants meet, the entire country comes to a standstill. Even fans who have little time for either side of the Old Firm drop everything for the biggest game in the calendar. After playing in other huge derbies, it speaks volumes that Larsson holds to Old Firm above the likes of El Clasico despite it not having the same profile or global audience. When the two sides meet next weekend, Scotland will grind to a halt for a few hours as they play for a place in the Scottish Cup final.
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