Former Rangers star Neil McCann believes that Celtic missing out on ex-England international goalkeeper Fraser Forster could hand the Gers a title advantage.
The talented former Ibrox wide man was speaking ahead of what promises to be a crunch season in Scotland with both Rangers and Celtic looking to secure quality options.
Forster was a huge part of Celtic’s title charge last season and was one of the key reasons our Old Firm rivals edged out a 1-0 Betfred Cup Final win against us in December.
Signed on-loan from Southampton last season, his influence and presence would be a considerable blow for a Celtic scrambling to fill the void left by a player they sold to the Saints for £10m in 2014.
Such a blow in fact, that McCann believes it could be a major influence in Rangers securing their first title since 2011.
“It’s the omission of Forster from that starting line-up that I think is absolutely huge,” McCann said [BBC Scotland].
“I look at the Rangers squad and it is virtually unchanged – not a lot of changes other than one or two additions.
“Rangers are every bit as good as Celtic on their day and they have proved it.
“They have to find the longevity and stamina for a season and deal with the pressure, but I think the fans can create a lot of pressure and, if the fans are not there, it could help Rangers.”
Rangers have had a relatively quiet closed season behind the scenes whilst there have been several high-profile incidents across the city.
Away from reportedly missing out on six-cap former England goalie Forster, the club has been troubled by a very public dispute between manager Neil Lennon and striker Leigh Griffiths.
Rangers need to stay focused amid all the transfer chatter and talk of pressure as they look to secure 55 and resume their natural position at the top of the Scottish footballing pyramid.
McCann believes this is a task made easier by Forster’s absence from the Celtic starting XI.