Celtic v Rangers. The Old Firm derby. El Glasico (okay, maybe not). Arguably the biggest derby match in world football returns this weekend.
Ahead of this historic tussle – the 416th meeting of the sides – we look back at five of the most memorable meetings.
Rangers 3-3 Celtic – November 19 1995
German international Andreas Thom opened the scoring with a thunderous strike which signalled the sensational game ahead – with both clubs contributing to a sensational game of football.
Brian Laudrup replied with his own cracker just before half-time, before Celtic retook the lead.
Ally McCoist took time out from filming A Question of Sport to nod home an equaliser, before an own goal looked to have given Rangers the points, only for the enigmatic Pierre van Hooijdonk to tie the game at 3-3.
More of that excitement on Sunday please, guys.
Celtic 0-3 Rangers – May 2 1999
Every league title is sweet, no matter how many you’ve notched up. But to win the league at the home of your biggest rivals? There’s nothing better. And in 1999, Rangers did just that, for the first time in the club’s illustrious history.
Neil McCann scored the opener from close range in the 12th minute, and the Greenock-born hitman completed the scoring with a lovely solo goal, as he rounded helpless Hoops ‘keeper Jonathan Gould.
Lorenzo Amoruso also got his name on the scoresheet with a penalty whose award caused more than a few frustrated murmurings among the Parkhead faithful. A day of truly polarising emotions for these two giants of the Scottish game.
Celtic 6-2 Rangers – August 27 2000
Chris Sutton’s close-range tap in signalled a Celtic whirlwind, as the Hoops raced into a three-goal lead within 11 minutes. Stilian Petrov doubled the lead in the eighth minute before ex-Aston Villa boss Paul Lambert stroked a third home to send the Parkhead faithful into dreamland.
Claudio Reyna pulled one back for Rangers before a sensational lob from Henrik Larsson restored the hosts’ three-goal lead.
A Billy Dodds goal from the spot caused a few nerves for Bhoys boss Martin O’Neill, but a second from Larsson sealed the points, before new boy Chris Sutton netted again in his first ever Old Firm derby.
The day was a good omen for the men in green and white, with Celtic going on to win the Scottish Premier League title by 15 points.
Rangers 3-2 Celtic – May 4 2002
Danish winger Peter Lovenkrands wrote his name into Rangers folklore during 90 minutes of breathless football, to give Celtic Hampden heartbreak in the 2002 Scottish Cup Final.
John Hartson’s scrappy header opened the scoring for the Hoops before a stellar finish from Lovenkrands levelled the scoring on the 20-minute mark.
Bodo Balde restored the Hoops’ lead with another close-range header, before Barry Ferguson’s magnificent free-kick again brought the tie back into the balance.
Lovenkrands’ last-minute header (noticing a theme here?) sent the ‘Gers fans into raptures and gave Alex McLeish a first Scottish Cup win as a manager, having won the tournament five times as an Aberdeen player.
Celtic 3-0 Rangers – April 29 2012
The Light Blues’ most recent memory of facing Celtic in the top-flight will not be a happy one, and the Ibrox club will certainly have their sights set on revenge when the two clubs meet next season.
A flying header from Charlie Mulgrew began one of the most dominant derby day performances in memory, for the Parkhead side.
Kris Commons’ nonchalant lob capped off a superb team goal for the hosts, as the English midfielder netted his only goal of the season (and what a time to score it!).
A sensational Gary Hooper strike in the second half ended this as a contest, though the home side could have recorded a greater margin of victory on another day. Not a video we imagine too many Rangers fans will want to click on.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
This post first appeared here