COMMENT By Matt Farr
Rangers and Celtic are set to go head to head for a fifth time this season with a place in the Scottish Cup Final up for grabs.
Celtic have taken the spoils on three of their last four meetings, but Rangers will be determined to put a temporary end to their dominance with a win in the Scottish Cup semi final at Hampden on Sunday.
In doing so, they could also wreak their rivals’ chances of winning a domestic treble, but it won’t be an easy task.
However, there will be a number of Ibrox figures looking to make the difference when they face off against Celtic on Sunday, and here Football Insider reveals the three key senior figures that could have the biggest impact.
Unsurprisingly, the veteran in the Rangers camp holds considerable responsibility on his shoulders.
The 37-year-old has been there and done it all, and is no stranger to the rivalry between Celtic and Rangers, having featured on both sides during his decorated career.
Miller has scored 12 goals for Rangers this season, yet while he is not the most prolific of strikers, he scores important goals.
There is no occasion more important for Rangers than a clash with their biggest rivals, not to mention the added spectacle of it being a cup semi final.
Mark Warburton struggled to produce a side capable of matching Celtic, but his successor has brought about a much-rejuvenated Rangers since his departure.
Caixinha is undefeated from his first five games in charge at Ibrox, winning three and keeping four clean sheets, and he looks a better prospect than Warburton to ensure their decent record goes untarnished against Celtic.
The 3-0 win over rivals Aberdeen at the start of the month proved the Portuguese has sparked a response out of a deflated Rangers side, and such fight will be imperative on Sunday.
There is still work to be done to challenge Celtic in the long term, but on a one-off basis, Rangers’ new found belief and confidence will give them a strong chance of recording a precious victory.
Caixinha’s arrival has restored the 19-year-old’s chances of becoming a hit at Rangers.
He has yet to start a match under the new boss, but he has appeared as a substitute in four of his five matches during his tenure, and he has made a decent impression.
The former Leicester youngster gave a particularly pleasing display against Aberdeen, bagging a goal and an assist in a 20 minute cameo display.
Dodoo had rarely featured during the latter part of Warburton’s tenure, and during Graeme Murty’s brief stint as caretaker boss, but under Caixinha he looks as though he can have a real impact.
Even if he retains his role on the bench against Celtic, he can have a massive role to play as a substitute, and can attempt to exploit any tiredness or sloppiness from their opponents late into the game.
In other Rangers news, fans are furious after the suspended Scott Brown was made available to play for Celtic.