Rangers fans can be thankful Caixinha will reportedly miss out on Celtic clash
COMMENT By Matt Farr
Rangers are edging ever closer to appointing a new manager at Ibrox, and Pedro Caixinha looks to be the man to take the club forward.
However, although fans might be eager to see what their new senior man can bring to the team, they should be thankful that he does not have to begin with such a momentous occasion at Celtic Park.
First and foremost, it is the stature of the clash that would have been the biggest worry for Caixinha on his debut.
Rangers are not expected to win, given the current abyss in quality between the two sides amid Celtic’s recent dominance, but the fans will not share that view.
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They will still be expecting a heroic display, and will hope in particular that their side do not suffer a repeat of the 5-1 thrashing earlier in the season.
Several notable Scottish footballing figures, including Alan Stubbs, believed that Caixinha would have been perfect to take up arms at Ibrox in time for the Celtic clash.
However, to come in just days before such a high profile tie and try and put fresh ideas across to the players could have been a disaster waiting to happen. Therefore, Rangers have made the right call leaving Graeme Murty in charge.
Meanwhile, past Rangers managers (including caretaker and interim managers) have not always fared very well in their first games in charge at Ibrox.
Ian Durrant, Ally McCoist, Kenny McDowall and Stuart McCall all failed to win their first games in charge – some against much lesser opposition.
The likes of Paul Le Guen, Walter Smith, Mark Warburton and Murty, meanwhile, have fared a little better; but an opening clash with Celtic would have made life very difficult for Caixinha to have avoided falling into the same category as Durrant, McCoist and co.
But like any manager entering a new job, Caixinha will need time to implement the desired change in Scotland.
Such change may not even be possible before the end of the campaign, and the summer recruitment drive will be a clear indication of any potential future success at Ibrox in the coming years.
Once the Celtic game is out of the way, Rangers fans can look forward to what Caixinha has to offer the club; a task that may be made easier without have taken a hit by Brendan Rodgers’ side on Sunday.
In other Rangers news, here are three ways the club can solve Murty’s selection headache against Celtic.