RYAN JACK believes it’s a totally different Rangers that takes on Celtic today.
He’ll be lining up alongside a number of new players at Parkhead – but the midfielder says the main difference is attitude.
Last season there was a lack of belief in the Light Blue ranks.
The players made all the right noises, but they didn’t really feel it was possible to dominate their great Glasgow rivals.
Deep down there was still a feeling of self-doubt.
Jack was only able to play in one Old Firm game last season – a 2-0 defeat at Ibrox – before injury curtailed his campaign.
He was forced to watch some painful defeats from the stands, but is adamant things have changed dramatically under Steven Gerrard.
He said: “I think the whole mentality is different now, if I’m being honest.
“We are going into the game with a good bit of confidence after getting through in Europe.
“There’s a lot of good stuff going on at the club. The staff have brought fresh ideas, the players have got a real buzz and the fans are buzzing.
“We’re not here to make up the numbers. We’re here to actually compete and challenge for cups.
“We wanted get to the group stage of the Europa League. We’ve done that and now it’s a challenge to show what we can do on that stage.
“Today we want to show everyone the real Rangers. I can’t wait for it to get started.”
Steven Gerrard was at Ibrox when Rangers lost 3-2 to 10-man Celtic at Ibrox in March.
His analysis of the game was: “On the day Rangers lacked a bit of courage and also lacked a bit of fitness and power to run all over Celtic.”
Jack, 26, clearly feels the courage is now there, and says the fitness issue has definitely been dealt with.
He went on: “As soon as the manager walked in the door, one of the first things he said was that this season we’re going to be fitter than anyone, we’re going to be able to run more than anyone and work harder than anyone.
“All these things give you a wee advantage on the pitch.
“We bought into that, and I definitely feel as fit as I have in my career.
“That shows in big games and big moments when you need to stand up and be counted.
“We did that against Ufa the other night when we were down to nine men. We did double the running.
“We knew not to panic and how to deal with it.
“You want to run yourself into the ground in every game.
“You just knuckle down and do what you can for the team.”