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Last Updated: Friday, 15 December 2006, 20:14 GMT
Rivals vie for Old Firm victory
Rangers manager Paul Le Guen and Celtic boss Gordon Strachan
Le Guen (left) and Strachan are gunning for an Old Firm victory
Rangers manager Paul Le Guen has urged his players to show pride in Sunday's Old Firm league game at Ibrox.

The Frenchman's side trail league leaders Celtic by 16 points and know defeat would all but end their hopes of winning the championship.

"It'll be a tough game obviously but it is a question of pride," Le Guen said.

Celtic boss Gordon Strachan said his players were good at handling the pressure of an Old Firm clash, and he hoped that would continue on Sunday.

Le Guen said his side would be confident about facing their Old Firm rivals with the majority of the Ibrox crowd behind them.

"I think that it will be a tough game obviously but it is a question of pride. We must be ready to fight. We are ready," said Le Guen.

To win the game, it is a question of pride

Rangers manager Paul Le Guen

"We just want to win the game. The gap is apart from that. To win the game, it is a question of pride. I would like the fans to be happy and proud of the players."

The Frenchman said the onus was on Rangers to put Celtic under pressure and eat into their big lead in the SPL.

"The gap is big - they had an exceptional run of victories," said Le Guen.

Celtic's Aiden McGeady challenges for the ball with Rangers captain Barry Ferguson and Alan Hutton
Celtic lead their Old Firm rivals by 16 points in the SPL

"We will try to close this gap and see how they react as well if we can have a run of victories."

Strachan's first Old Firm game ended in a 3-1 defeat, with midfielders Alan Thompson and Neil Lennon both receiving red cards.

But the Celtic boss said the Old Firm teams respected each other and he was confident that would be illustrated at Ibrox.

"We have equipped ourselves well in these games and apart from some disciplinary problems in the first game that I was involved in against them, we have been quite good at handling these games," he said.

"To be fair, since I've been here, the two teams have handled it well and in a respectful manner," the Celtic boss said.

"People might think that surprising but I feel there is a respect between the two clubs and the players.

"I think that has been shown in the games apart, as I say, from the first game I was in charge and hopefully that will continue."



SEE ALSO
Rangers v Celtic
15 Dec 06 |  Scottish Premier


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