Mark Warburton's Glasgow Rangers squad are preparing for their first campaign back in the top flight.
Former Rangers striker Steven Thompson
Mark Warburton's men begin their league campaign on Saturday at home to Hamilton, and go into the contest off the back of a flawless Scottish League Cup group-stage campaign, which included a victory over top flight rivals Motherwell.
Rangers manager Mark Warburton
And Thompson - who won two league titles during his spell at Ibrox - believes that while the Light Blues will not be celebrating their 55th league crown this year, the business they have done over the summer should see them establish themselves as Celtic's nearest challengers.
"Their summer signing policy has been very good. When they make a change to the team, it doesn't necessarily weaken the team. They've got a strong squad," he told BBC Sport.
Joey Barton is one of nine summer signings
Though the Gers were ruthless enough in the League Cup, they were somewhat brought back down to earth in their final pre-season friendly, which saw them comfortably lose 3-1 at home to Burnley.
And while the Clarets arguably boast a stronger squad than almost all of the teams that Warburton's men will face this term, the defeat will have reminded the squad that just because they have brought in several star names over the summer, they have no right to expect to be the Hoops' closest rivals.
However, if the squad can use the defeat to motivate themselves to work tirelessly to enjoy an excellent first campaign back, then there is no doubt that they have the potential to achieve what Thompson expects them to accomplish, if not more.
Warburton and assistant manager David Weir