Van Bronckhorst delivers verdict on Aaron Ramsey debuting in Celtic v Rangers clash

Aaron Ramsey in action for Wales during World Cup qualifier against Czech Republic

Rangers manager Giovani Van Bronckhorst has ruled out handing Aaron Ramsey his debut for the club in the upcoming Old Firm clash against Celtic at Parkhead.

The Gers had a relatively quiet January transfer window until the last week. Indeed, they caught the headlines last Thursday by signing Manchester United winger Amad Diallo on another loan deal.

And they have now sealed temporary terms with former Arsenal midfielder Ramsey.

The 31-year-old Wales international played 371 times for the Gunners, scoring 65 goals and assisting the same number.

He has not managed to have the same impact at Juve. As such, he decided to move to Scotland for another change of scenery.

The move has, deservedly, grabbed the headlines in Scotland. Ramsey still remains a huge draw, and his signing is seen as a major coup for the Scottish champions.

However, hopes that he could make an instant debut against Celtic on Wednesday night have been ended by Van Bronkhorst.

The 31-year-old last played in mid-November, for Wales, and has had injury issues ever since. Furthermore, he also contracted Covid-19 in January.

Ahead of Wednesday’s Premiership encounter at Parkhead, van Bronckhorst said: “Aaron trained with the squad. He is just coming back from a couple of weeks when he didn’t play, so it’s too soon for him to be involved, but I expect Aaron Ramsey to be in the squad in the near future, really quick.”

No Aaron Ramsey – but McGregor retains place

Goalkeeper Allan McGregor’s position is also under scrutiny following two costly errors during Saturday’s 3-3 draw with Ross County.

But the Rangers manager said: “I don’t have a decision to make. For me, Allan is the number one goalkeeper and you know with goalkeepers, if they make a mistake, most of the time it’s crucial.

“But I think Allan is still a great goalkeeper. He has saved us many times this season and it would be strange for me to get him out of the team after the game on Saturday.

“You don’t want to make mistakes on purpose, it will overcome you, but Allan turned 40 on Monday so he has all the experience to overcome this situation.

“For me there was no discussion to think about taking Allan out of the team.”

Old Firm derby excites Van Bronckhorst

Van Bronckhorst went on to experience huge games with Arsenal, Barcelona, Holland and Feyenoord after his playing stint at Ibrox around the turn of the century, but he admits the prospect of facing Celtic again is a major moment.

“It’s the case for players and it’s the same for coaches, you have special games in your career and in a season and of course for me and the club the Old Firm is the biggest game we play in the league,” he said.

“I played as a player, now also as a coach. It’s the same – you want to enjoy the game, you want to be successful and make sure you get a good result.

“I feel excitement because it’s a big game. I played many big games in my career – Old Firms, El Classicos, the World Cup final, Champions League final, Euros, World Cups, all exciting games.

“To prepare for games like this is really, really nice because you want to get the best out of your team, you want to perform well and make sure everything is well organised.

“But it’s all with a lot of energy and to make sure everything is there to get a good result.”

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