Nearly two years ago, Rangers suffered the kind of setback which, more or less, consigned Steven Gerrard's maiden season in Scotland to one of barren fortune.
Aberdeen came away from Ibrox with a 1-0 victory, notable for a campaign where the Light Blues submitted far too many draws to realistically compete with Celtic for the Premiership.
That day should be a reminder to Gerrard and Rangers fans. The Glasgow giants have been on their A game as they have set about business in 2020-21, unbeaten in the League and having conceded a mere three goals - essentially the current difference between them and defending champions Celtic. Such outstanding statistics, as well as Rangers' ruthless 8-0 dismantling of Hamilton Academical at Ibrox before the international break, draw out understandable buoyancy amongst supporters ahead of today's key clash against Aberdeen, but Gerrard will guard against complacency.
The Rangers boss will also be mindful of a more recent meeting against the Dons, which helped extinguish the Ibrox pretensions for glory as Celtic took control of the title race following the winter interlude. An expert manoeuvre of the Aberdeen bus gained a scoreless draw back in February, so it will be interesting to note what approach visiting manager Derek McInnes chooses this afternoon.
Ryan Kent got Rangers off to a good start this season with a 1-0 win at Pittodrie which was more one-sided than the scoreline suggests - but, unlike struggling Accies, third-placed Aberdeen should provide a fair challenge.
They will be determined to improve upon their last trip to Glasgow, where they folded in the Scottish Cup Semi-Final against Celtic, but have shown their capabilities, taking a point against Neil Lennon's side at home recently.
How will Rangers regain their momentum, following the exploits of Scotland in the international arena? Fortunately for Gerrard, the lack of a winter break this season, due to the shoehorning of fixtures because of Covd-19, is an ill-wind dodged as his well-organised, efficient unit have the appearance of a side who want to drive on without any distractions. Today is a particularly big game for ex-Don Ryan Jack, one of Scotland's stars, who helped the national side qualify for Euro 2020. These are fine days for Jack, much admired by Gerrard from virtually the first day the Liverpool icon observed him in training. The prospect of a massive clash, ahead of the showpiece Europa League tie against Benfica at Ibrox is sure to keep momentum bubbling.
The Light Blues enjoyed a spread of goals from a number of players in that rout of Hamilton two weeks ago, and if Aberdeen opt for caution - a sensible strategy against a team with 37 League goals already - then Jack's midfield partner, Joe Aribo, will be assigned with can-opening duties. The fleet-of-foot 24-year-old is a curiosity and, in terms of temperament, seems unfazed about the pressure on Rangers to deliver elusive, prized silverware for his high-profile manager. Gerrard will also give consideration to starting new recruit Bongani Zungu, the South African international arriving in Glasgow to rave reviews.
In this context, it seems fanciful of Rangers to make a cliched 'shock swoop' for Jack Wilshere. Gerrard, now he has a settled squad, would be wise not to go down the cul-de-sac of Mark Warburton, an Ibrox predecessor.
Philippe Senderos, Joey Barton and Niko Kranjcar are all examples of the misguided impulses of Warburton, who felt Rangers could be a rest home for the autumn of jaded careers. Wilshere is, frankly, a free agent for a reason. Of course, you always have honourable exceptions; Ibrox striker and model professional Jermain Defoe is an excellent case in point, yet these moves seldom end well at clubs with savage intensity of expectation, like Rangers or Celtic.
Wilshere is clearly not the talented, but fragile, operator of, say, six years ago at Arsenal. In view of available midfield resources and the synergy about the first-team squad, it seems inconceivable that men of the know-how of Gerrard and assistant boss Gary McAllister would be willing to jeopardise that for the sake of random, wayward, kite flying. Wilshere simply could not handle the physicality of Scottish football and its number of artificial pitches.
Today should see Rangers atone for those previous, costly, Ibrox slip-ups against Aberdeen. It will take something remarkable from the Dons to stop Gerrard's on-song outfit.