Rangers have been handed a substantial boost heading into the match against Celtic by the news that £5m flop goalkeeper Vasilis Barkas will start the match.
The Greek international goalie has come in for considerable criticism for the start to his Celtic career as both the Parkhead jersey and the goalposts appear to dwarf the stumbling stopper.
Dropped for the equally as poor Scott Bain and eventually Celtic rookie Conor Hazard, Gers fans will view this as good news and a position to exploit going into the crunch match.
“We’ve got big games coming up and I want Vasilis to play in them,” said Celtic boss Neil Lennon [Scottish Sun].
“He’s come in as number one and I want him to play.
“I think Conor’s done very well but he’s still very fledgling in his career.
“It would be a big call to put him into a game of this magnitude at the weekend.
“So, I want to go back to experience.
“Vasilis hasn’t shown us yet what he’s all about – but he’s capable of doing that.
“So I thought it was important to give him a game before the weekend.”
The former AEK Athens goalkeeper was less than convincing in Rangers’ 2-0 Celtic Park win in October and the Gers players will be encouraged to test the 26-year-old whenever possible.
It’s not the only boost to Rangers’ chances this weekend as £7m Celtic defender Chris Jullien is a major doubt for the clash at Ibrox.
The defender had to be stretchered off in Celtic’s 3-0 win over Dundee United meaning our Parkhead rivals could be without their main defender for the crunch game in Govan.
However, Rangers aren’t without injury worries themselves after Steven Gerrard confirmed that a second midfielder would miss the match against Celtic.