Derby not a must-win game for Rangers, says manager Philippe Clement

Clement, who inherited a Rangers team trailing Celtic by seven points in October, said: “We’re really close by showing our level to close this gap of seven points – it would be amazing, what nobody expected six months ago.”

Goalkeeper Jack Butland said it is vital Rangers are “in the game” from the start.

In their last Old Firm encounter, Rangers were behind within a minute, two down at half-time and 3-2 down before a late leveller secured a draw.

“It’s important that we’re in the game to start and we’re not fighting an uphill battle and starting the game in a poor manner,” said keeper Butland.

“The past is not a concern to me. For this group, it’s about the next game and us wanting to be successful and trying to achieve something.”

Butland is also waiting for his first win over Celtic but has helped Rangers concede the fewest amount of goals in the division so far this season.

“Of course, it’s not just another game but it’s another game in our season, it’s an important one, preparations haven’t changed,” said the England international.

“Obviously, you’re focused on a different team – a team that we’ve faced plenty of times already so we know what to expect. We know from our experiences how we can be better and things that we can do better but there’s been opportunities for us.

“We take a lot of heart in the fact that in all the games, we’ve created chances, created opportunities, so it’s an opportunity for us to learn from that, to go there with a lot of belief and confidence that we can cause problems.

“We have done that and we need to do that and be defensively solid and confident that we can take something from it.”

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