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Rangers can rely on Andy Halliday for Old Firm fire, says Alex McLeish

By Andy Newport

Alex McLeish never saw fear enter the eyes of Barry Ferguson when he was his Rangers boss. And he reckons current Ibrox manager Mark Warburton will be able to see that same unflinching look when he turns to Andy Halliday ahead of Sunday's BetFred Cup semi-final clash with Celtic.

Former Gers and Scotland chief McLeish could always count on his captain to put in a performance, no matter who the Light Blues were up against.

McLeish believes Halliday's desire to succeed will ensure he has a similar impact on the present-day line-up.

And he reckons that drive will be crucial if Gers are to bounce back from last month's 5-1 Old Firm disaster when they face up to their rivals again at Hampden.

McLeish said: "I would have taken Barry anywhere. He could have played on any stage in the world and not be fazed. He'd just say, 'Give me the ball'.

"For such a young guy he was a real leader and I can see that same kind of mentality in Andy Halliday.

"He will take the ball anywhere. He's not scared to receive it, not scared to use it.

"He is the type of guy who will demand from his team-mates that what happened at Celtic Park is not allowed to happen again."

Gers boss Warburton has faced his toughest spell since moving to Glasgow in the six weeks that followed his side's dismal 5-1 thrashing at Celtic Park.

Everything from his handling of the Joey Barton saga to his insistence on attacking play has been questioned and pulled apart.

McLeish added: "The players have to study and look back at last month's game and say to themselves where they could have done better."

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