Rangers defender on what makes Celtic derby dates so special

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Rangers defender Richard Foster considers Old Firm derby dates with Celtic to be 'unlike anything else', with two old foes ready to rekindle their rivalry.

Rangers defender Richard Foster has been discussing the imminent renewal of Old Firm rivalries with Celtic in the Sunday Mail.

Glasgow’s arch-rivals will go head-to-head on February 1 in the semi-finals of the Scottish League Cup.

It is approaching three years since the pair last locked horns, with an eagerly-anticipated fixture off the calendar since April 2012.

The struggles endured by Rangers, which have seen them forced to work their way back up from the bottom of the league pyramid, are largely responsible for the derby break.

The Ibrox outfit are, however, looking forward to testing themselves again against their neighbours.

Foster admits the encounter at Parkhead will be a shock to the system for many of those in the Gers ranks – as they take in the experience for the first time – but he has called on the derby rookies to embrace the occasion.

He said in the Sunday Mail: “The fixture itself is just incredible and the atmosphere is unlike anything else I’ve ever experienced in my career.

“You can only fully appreciate it when you’ve played in one of them. The pace is 100 mph – for the first 85 minutes!

“The games come with a lot of pressure but they’re great to play in.

“There will be boys in our squad who have never played in one before and you try to tell them to keep their head for the first wee while. The speed an intensity of the game can take your breath away.”

Foster has faced Celtic twice before, and suffered defeat both times.

He will be hoping to right a few wrongs next Sunday and help Rangers to book a day out at Hampden Park.

Whatever happens, though, it promises to be some occasion in Glasgow – with Old Firm foes meeting for the 400th time.

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