Rangers star Andy Halliday discusses the surprising reaction he got from Celtic fans following semi-final win

The midfielder was a key part of the Scottish Championship side's success in the game.

Rangers midfielder Andy Halliday has explained that he was surprised by the reaction of some Celtic fans in the wake of their Scottish Cup semi-final defeat to Mark Warburton's men last month, The Scottish Sun reports.

It was the Gers that came out on top and booked their place in the final after an exhilarating 2-2 draw was followed by a dramatic penalty shootout.

Despite the game pitting the Scottish Premiership leaders against a Scottish Championship side, it was the Light Blues that dominated much of the game with Halliday's personal battle with Hoops skipper Scott Brown being looked upon as a key factor as to why Ronny Deila's men were never given a chance to settle into the game.

And while the defeat would have been hugely difficult for Bhoys supporters to accept, Halliday explained that many have been incredibly gracious towards him in the wake of the game.

"I was really surprised after the Old Firm game. I've had a lot of Celtic fans come up to me and they have been full of praise, which is unusual," he told The Scottish Sun.

"I still get a few people abusing me, but it's not too bad. It’s just good to have that fixture back. It's a worldwide spectacle and something we've missed the last four years.

"When you are a Rangers player and you retire, the first thing you will tell your kids about is the amount of Old Firm games you played in."

While some Celtic fans will point to the fact that the side have basically secured their fifth league title in a row and say that they are not bothered about Rangers being at the highest level, the interest in the semi-final surely proved that the Gers' promotion to the top flight will be beneficial for Scottish football.

Though the Hoops have remained the dominant force in recent years, they have had to watch several key players move on in search of a new challenge. But if Warburton's men are able to get back towards the summit, then the battle between the Old Firm pair will surely be the kind of challenge that will persuade players to stay.

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