‘WHY WE RESPECT EVERY OPPONENT,’ RODGERS

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BRENDAN RODGERS insisted Celtic will treat Sevco Rangers with respect in Sunday’s Scottish Cup semi-final at Hampden.

Ibrox boss Graeme Murty revealed his players had cheered when the draw paired them with the Cup holders.

The Hoops go into the confrontation against their Glasgow rivals looking for an unprecedented second successive domestic treble while Rodgers has faced them nine times, winning seven and drawing two.

When asked if the memory of the opposition players yelling with delight would be an incentive for his team, the Parkhead gaffer replied: “No, it is probably something etched on Rangers’ minds because this is the game that they were cheering for.

“For us, we always respect every opponent we play and just get ready for the game.

“One of the values of this club is about humility.

“There is a lot made up here and everyone talks about this gap, but Celtic’s opponents are not just Rangers (sic).

“Aberdeen have been in second position for the last number of years, Hibs have come up and done very well, Hearts are getting stronger, Kilmarnock are doing very well and so are Motherwell.

“Every game is a challenge and I respect every team we play, but, of course, there is always a lot of focus on Celtic v Rangers.”Rodgers refused to look too far ahead and added: “It really is about the next game.

“We are a club where the history is enormous. Last year was historic, but we want to keep writing our own history and that means going into this just focused on the next game.

“These are always tough games and I’ve now been involved in nine of them and they are always complicated – this will be no different.

“We go to Hampden with a team that won there and played very well and that obviously gives us faith.”

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