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Rangers V Motherwell at Ibrox Stadium : Match Preview
Published : 25 Sep 2012 18:04:06
Rangers V Motherwell - view commentary, squad, and statistics of the game live.
McCoist: Well are the favourites Ally McCoist believes Motherwell are the favourites over Rangers heading into their Scottish Communities League Cup tie at Ibrox. Added to that, the Light Blues boss believes the third-round clash is the first time his club has ever gone into a domestic outing as underdogs. Stuart McCall's men sit at the summit of the Clydesdale Bank Premier League, while Rangers are still trying to settle into their new surroundings in the Irn-Bru Third Division following a summer of turmoil. McCoist said: "I think Stuart and I will probably disagree on this one but I would have to say Motherwell are favourites. "Being top of the SPL and the in-form side in the country at the moment, you'd have to say they would be favourites. "It's not for that reason alone. We are in a transitional period, we are a completely new team." On Rangers' underdog status, the manager added: "Let's be honest, it's probably the first time it's ever happened in the club's history. "Going into any game domestically, you could argue that Rangers, even against Celtic, if not total favourites, would have been expected to win the game or come out of the game with a massive amount of credit for our performance level. "The fact of the matter is, where the club is and with the new team, it's not a given that we're expected to beat Motherwell. "It's not a bad thing. It's a learning curve and a realisation of where we are as a team." Rangers were dumped out of the Ramsdens Cup on penalties against Queen of the South at Ibrox last week and McCoist is well aware of the size of task facing his side against the Steelmen. He said: "Motherwell always gave us very difficult games when we had arguably #25million, #30million worth of talent. "Nothing will change in the respect that they'll give our new team a very tough task. "At this moment in time, Motherwell will fancy their chances against anybody in the country." Ian Black has been rated doubtful for the tie. The midfielder was forced out of Sunday's league game against Montrose with a hamstring injury and is still struggling ahead of the third-round tie. Andy Little (foot) and David Templeton (ankle ligament damage) both remain on the sidelines. Meanwhile, McCall has told his team to focus on the game and not the occasion. Motherwell are sure to be met with a highly-charged atmosphere when they travel to Ibrox. McCall was a Rangers player when Motherwell last won at Ibrox - in 1997 when Owen Coyle's double helped keep Motherwell out of a relegation play-off and delayed the home team's ninth title in a row. The Lanarkshire side have not beaten Rangers since James McFadden scored the only goal in a Fir Park Boxing Day clash in 2002. McCall feels there is little to choose between the teams but he is optimistic his players will take encouragement from the goalless draw they secured in Govan in May and focus on the football rather than the off-field issues. "The record we've got at Ibrox, it's very hard to classify us as favourites," said the Motherwell manager, whose team let slip a two-goal lead to draw 3-3 at Aberdeen on Sunday. "For us this is the toughest draw we could have got, and for them a difficult one as well. "It has the makings of a really good game. It's probably an even game, a hard one to call. "If we can produce what we did up at Aberdeen on Sunday in an attacking form, I'll be really pleased. "They have been through tough times but they have still managed to bring in quality players, so this will be a tough test. "If you take Stevie Hammell out, we have a really young back line. The crowd will be like a 12th man for them but we're playing quite well away from home. "It just has the makings of a really good game." Motherwell have no fresh injury worries, with Steven Saunders, who is recovering from knee surgery, the only player missing.